Mass wedding goes cashless, Gujarat couples get cheques as gifts
It was a mass wedding with a difference. Marriages of nine couples from Vankar Samaj (weaver community) were solemnised at Gujarat’s Bayad town on Sunday without a single penny being spent in cash.
Even marriage rituals like paying ‘dakshina’ (religious payment in cash or kind) to the priest and ‘kanyadaan’ (father giving away his daughter in marriage to the groom) were performed either through cheques or digital mode of payments.
Swipe machines were installed even for the guests wishing to gift money to the newlyweds.
The first-of-its-kind cashless mass marriage in the state was organised by Shri Veermaya Vankar Samaj Sudharak Samiti.
An office bearer of the samiti said all transactions, be it payment for the mandap, caterer or the priest, were cashless to promote digital economy.
“To carry forward Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for digital economy, we want the couples who started a new journey in their lives should emulate this cashless-culture even in future,” said Hasmukh Saxena, convener of the samiti.
The priests who conducted the rituals were given a cheque of Rs 7,777 as dakshina.
The Union Bank of India set up a counter in this remote town in Aravalli district to facilitate guests to swipe their debit or credit cards to present gifts to the couples.
“The organisers presented money to the couples on behalf of those guests who did not carry cards in this rural area. Later, the guests repaid the money to the organisers,” Saxena added.
The community wholeheartedly welcomed the initiative and even made minor changes to the tradition. For instance, for the ritual of giving cash gift to the bride by the in-laws at the time of the wedding, cheque was used.
“Instead of cash, we gave our new daughter-in-law a cheque for Rs 700’’, said Jivabhai Chauhan, a relative of a groom.
Couples from diverse backgrounds, including farmers, government servants, teachers and police sub-inspectors and even a daily wager, tied the nuptial knot.