Srinagar: In a heart-warming gesture, people in Kashmir have joined hands to help financially weak brides get married by offering different services free of cost.
From tents to free mehandi services and wazwan, a lot of people this season have announced to contribute to the weddings of orphan and financially challenged brides.
These volunteers have come forward to address the problem of significant expenses associated with weddings in Kashmir, especially the financial burden faced by families of brides, which pushes them into heavy debt.
While there are many NGOs currently working for such causes, people are now helping financially overburdened brides individually to ensure that their wedding doesn’t get delayed due to the lack of resources.
Aafaq Ahmad is one such volunteer, who is offering free tents to the underprivileged brides and grooms in south Kashmir’s Kulgam.
For the last month, he has offered his services to more than six brides who belonged to an unprivileged section of the society and were scheduled to get married.
“I took this step to contribute to my society. My mother passed away recently. I decided to help the poor so that my mother is rewarded by Almighty for all my good deeds,” Ahmad said.
Ahmad said he was getting constant calls from people who needed help to get their children married.
“People contact me and take away my tents for as many days they wish,” he said.
In Srinagar’s Bemina, Aaliya Emran, a mehandi artist is also offering free service to poor brides.
Aaliya said she offers her service so that poor girls can make their weddings memorable.
For the last two months, she has designed mehandi for more than 90 brides without charging them anything.
“The basic idea is that we as a society have a role to play. I am playing my part by offering free mehandi services for poor brides so that their wedding day becomes memorable. By the grace of God, I am getting a good response and people constantly call me to help a poor bride,” she said.
Before it, many Wazas (local chefs) had also announced cooking wedding feasts for underprivileged women free of cost.
Due to the issues including customs and dowry, marriage in Kashmir has become unaffordable for the poor.
A new survey has revealed that Jammu and Kashmir has the highest number of unmarried youth in India. Around 29.1 percent of the youngsters (aged up to 29 years) are not married.