Breaking traditions that have continued for a long time, an Udaipur girl said no to liquor being served at her wedding. The family belongs to the Rajput community where liquor is a vital part of hospitality at any social event. The message was prominently printed on the wedding cards to ensure that everyone attending the event knew that they should not expect a drink.
The wedding of Santosh alias Pushpa Kanwar of Vadabavdi village in Udaipur district of Rajasthan was fixed with Hokamsingh Rathore for April 18. Santosh wanted her family to do away with two rituals that are followed in the community — offering liquor and pehravani (gifting clothes to the groom and his extended family). Her family agreed to it, and the family was happy when the groom and his family also agreed to set an example with their wedding.
“Liquor forms a very large share of the wedding expenses in our community. It is not only bad for health, but also puts severe financial burden on the family just like pehravni. While well off families can bear the expense, middle class and poor families face the brunt,” said Santosh. “I did not want my family to bear this financial burden and was very clear that my wedding would not have both these rituals. I am so happy that my husband and his family were happy to share this decision. The wedding went off beautifully and I am happy,” she added.
“I have always believed that reforms that come from individuals help the society. So when my daughter wanted that there should be no liquor, I agreed. People were surprised and asked many questions, but the best part was that the groom’s family supported us,” said Kishan Singh Kitawat.
The family’s decision was welcomed by the society and several social organisations while anti-liquor organisations extended good wishes and blessings to the young couple. Rajput organisations too extended support and solidarity, “It is an exemplary decision and I will encourage more people of my community to follow it,” said Lokendra Kalvi, patron of Rajput Karni Sena.