In a rare heart-warming gesture, seven girls from Valmiki (Dalit) community were married off by a man along with his own daughter in Ajimna village some 7km from Patan town on Thursday.
Not only did Amrut Desai pay from the wedding ceremony attended by over 3,000 people, but he also gifted the eight couples with essential household items that they will require to begin a new life.
Amrut Desai of Palanpur in #Gujarat
marries of seven #Dalit girls in daughter's wedding. The village members wholeheartedly supported it. Desai says, "This is an attempt to root out the stigma that still exist in the society". 3000 people attended it.#realheroes pic.twitter.com/5OzEAPz5p4
— Kumar Manish #VoicesAgainstCovidStigma (@kumarmanish9) April 27, 2018
“By marrying off the Dalit girls in the same ceremony along with my daughter, we tried to break the centuries-old evil of caste divide. It was our plan to get rid of the social evil and indifferent attitude towards the people of Dalit community that is deeply rooted in our society,” said Desai.
“I saw a good opportunity to initiate social change when my daughter’s marriage was finalized. After getting nod from my daughters and her in-laws we discussed the idea with the villagers. They not only accepted it, but also agreed to actively participate in the ceremony,” he added.
Adorned in gold jewellery and dressed in bright-coloured wedding dresses, eight girls sat alongside the grooms in golden turbans as the Hindu priest chanted vedic mantras solemnizing their marriages.
People from Ajimna and surrounding villages showered blessings on the newly-weds. “This is an attempt to root out the stigma that still exists in the society,” said Desai.
This article was originally published in Times Of India