The constitution of marriage dates back to years. Since human civilisation marriages are considered an important, integral and sacred practice in India so much so as to that individuals not wanting to get married face serious judgement and criticism even in this centuary. If I start talking about ‘societal norms’ in our nation that will become a whole new different blog in itself but what I’ll be writing about today is how worthy is an awe-inspiring, magnificent Indian wedding and is there really a need for one?
Around 20% of all loan applications received from young Indians aged 20-30% in the year 2018-19 were for funding their marriage and many also use their personal loan to fund their weddings. The data accounting for loans that the middle class people take from unauthorised places to sponsor weddings will become unquantifiable. An article in times of India recently stated that food worth around Rs.339 crore goes wasted in Indian wedding functions in Bangalore alone. The study said that about 84,960 marriages are held at 53 marriage halls in Bangalore every year. About 943 tonnes of high-calorie quality food is wasted in these halls annually. This is the statistical data of just one state of our nation, imagine the soaring high data of the whole nation. All this when hunger remains no.1 cause of death in the world and 1/3rd of the world’s hungry people live in India. 836 million Indians survive on less than Rs.20 a day and while you read this blog today about 20 crore Indians will sleep hungry tonight. In a country like India where malnutrition is embedded, hunger is a widespread too.
Through the above data and the introduction what I am trying to imply that there is an already an existing wide gap in terms of resource distribution and opportunities in our country. How fair is it for one to spend lakhs on a wedding functions while lakhs go to bed sleep without even a one course meal in the entire day. I do not nullify or disregard one’s need to celebrate and cherish their happiness in life but it could be done in a way that will bring happiness for the underprivileged too. Instead of serving your relatives with 4 course meal in a 5 star hotel, one can chose to offer food to the needy. There isn’t really a need for a lavish wedding just to satiate one’s socio-economic status. What people need to do is celebrate weddings as a private affair with their close and loved ones and make sure to help the needy too according to their capability. India celebrates 10 million weddings in a year! If the status symbol shifts from organising grand ceremonies to helping the poor, imagine the extent to which social stigmas like malnutrition, poverty, lack of shelter, medical facilities etc. can be curbed. I have tried to explain the thought through extravagant food bills in Indian wedding and malnutrition rate but there exists numerous ways to restrict unwanted expenses and channelize it’s financial benefit to the one in need. A bill was also passed in Lok Sabha in 2017 to check the ‘show of wealth’. According to the bill if any family spent more than 5lakhs on a wedding, they’ll have to contribute 10% of the amount on marriage to a girl from the underprivilege section of the society. Irrespective of legal bindings or restrictions, people have to develop self-consciousness and sensitivity. As Gandhiji said the earth has enough for everyone’s need but not for everyone’s greed. So it’s time people look beyond their greed and aid in fulfilling everyone’s need. This way we can have an effective and efficient utilisation of our resources and move towards an egalitarian society. So the next time you plan or organise a wedding make sure to have demarcations between your needs and wants!