Gargi Ahlawat, daughter of BJP MP from Jhunjunu chose to ride a chariot, a ritual usually performed by the groom, and reverse the age-old customs.
From a small town in Jhunjhunu, 150 km from Jaipur, Rajasthan, Gargi’s aim is to bring a change in the patriarchal mindset of society and spread the message that daughters are equal to sons. Gargi, who earned her MBA from the UK, is getting married to Delhi-based Kushal in Udaipur on February 8, followed by a reception in Delhi on February 10.
Gargi shared how her mother inspired her to initiate the needed change, “People in rural and semi-rural areas can be influenced by action but not by articles in newspapers or TV shows. My mother is campaigning for ‘Beti Bacho, Beti Padhao’. This action coming from the daughter of an MP can set an example for others to follow. A woman riding a horse carriage for the ritual is bound to be noticed and followed by other families soon.” She further added, “As the bindoli tradition says that relatives invite both the groom and the bride for a feast before the marriage. It is the groom who comes on a horse, but I changed it,” Gargi said with pride.
Proud of her daughter, Santosh Ahlawat said, “My district had skewed sex ratio which I fought like a warrior. Things have improved a lot in the last few years as awareness has increased with PM Narendra Modi’s ‘Beti Bachao’ campaign. I am happy that my daughter has taken the initiative forward.”
The reversal of the ritual by this bride riding the horse was widely accepted by residents of Chirawa, who witnessed the ceremony in huge number.