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Need to curb expenditure in private occasion of happiness

Thursday - December 13, 2018 1:34 pm , Category : OPINION & INTERVIEW

WTN- In India marriage is much more a social display than a private occasion of happiness. The more one spends on a wedding, the happier he feels. It is a sign of social standing and heft. The amount of money lavishly thrown in an upper class Indian wedding can feed half a million poor children for a year.

The Supreme Court has recently observed with sorrow and regret the colossal wastage of food and money in marriages and suggested people to rethink on it. Every star, every business tycoon, every sportsman today wants to beat the other in who spends the most.

Every person worth his name wants to grab the global headlines. This is shame and pity in a country where there is abject poverty all around. It is shame in a country where half of our children are underweight and stunted. It is a shame in a country where half of our women are anemic. It is a shame in a country where thousands of farmers commit suicide every year due to poverty and deprivation.

Half of Mumbai’s population lives in dingy slums. India stands among the lowest in world human development index. We can see where all the money goes. Ostentatious display is a primitive trend that signifies clan dominance and a pandering of the feudal overhang.

Prudence calls for restraint and moderation, in sync with our social realities. Where there is so much deprivation and scarcity, wastage is a crime and indicates a callous approach towards our social duties and ethical commitments. There can be a million ways to make a wedding celebration memorable yet frugal.

Wastage is not only socially regressive but also environmentally damaging. The amount of water wasted for instance in big marriage ceremonies or the amount of plastic plates used on hundreds of guests and then thrown away in garbage, directly impacts our environment. The number of cards sent to the guests for invitation directly relates to more cutting of trees which make paper. Our consciousness, our sensibility and our judgment in the light of our reason and education are the only things which can teach us to spend judiciously.

No legal or government clampdown can be a pleasurable experience or something that would ever be followed in letter and spirit. It completely depends on the individual outlook. The only silver lining is that there are people, may be still a small group, who are trying to change the trend. It might be a feeble beginning, yet something that exudes hope. There are some environmentally conscious men who are promoting the use of banana leaves or betel nut as plates for invitees at a marriage ceremony as they are cost-intensive and environment-friendly.

There are some who are doing away with conventional cards and sending invites on WhatsApp. Many are also asking their guests to confirm their presence so that food is prepared accordingly and is not wasted. Many people are feeding the poor exclusively as part of the marriage ceremony. There are marriages being solemnised without the customary band baja to check noise pollution and cost. Happiness can be derived not from outside gizmos and exhibitionism but it is an asset of the soul which needs to be awakened by giving and sharing.

Marriage is a bonding between two individuals and the starting of a new relationship between two families, and more it is a homely affair, greater is the warmth and intimacy between people of the two families. Taking it out on the street is a distraction that eats into the special moments that the special individuals should treasure.
-Window To News