Dharmasthala, April 30, 2016: Reports state, 127 couples were ceremoniously married at the famous 45th annual mass marriage at Sri Kshetra Dharmasthala on Apr 29, Friday. The brides and grooms entered wedlock at Amrutavarshini Sabha Bhavana at the auspicious Godhooli Lagna at 6.50 in the evening. The marriage rituals were held as per the customs of their respective castes.
A total of 22 pairs belonging to scheduled caste and 19 inter-religious marriages were the rarity this time. The 11,925th pair, Manoj A S of Chikkamagaluru and Divya, was a special pair as the bride is hearing and speech impaired.
Traditional cloth and jewels were provided to the brides and bridegrooms. The newly-married couples vowed to lead a life of respect and value.
Speaking on the occasion, Muzrai Minister Mahohar Tahsildar said the inter-religious marriage is helpful in the eradication of caste system. He said the government provides Rs 50,000 if the people belonging to different castes tie nuptial knots in mass marriages.
He said Rs 3 lakh will be provided to a woman belonging to Scheduled Caste, if she marries a man from another caste and Rs 2 lakh will be provided to a man belonging to Scheduled Caste, if he marries a woman from another caste. The chief minister has reserved separate funds in the budget for the purpose, he added.
Sri Kshetra Dharmasthala Dharmadhikari Dr D Veerendra Heggade said it is a misconception that the mass marriages are meant for only poor. Former cricketer Brijesh Patel, Hemavati V Heggade, D Harshendra Heggade, MLA K Vasant Bangera and others graced the weddings.