No more big fat Indian weddings? On Friday, 4th August 2023, Lok Sabha took up for discussion the ‘Prevention of Wasteful Expenditure on Special Occasions Bill 2020.’ Congress MP Jasbir Singh Gill introduced the private member’s bill in January 2020. The new bill aims to impose limits on the number of guests to be invited and dishes to be served at weddings, in addition to capping the amount spent on gifts to newlyweds.
Gill recommended that charitable donations be provided to underprivileged individuals, orphanages, or non-governmental organisations (NGOs) rather than costly presents.
According to Gill, the Bill aims to stop the lavish spending that places a heavy financial strain on the bride’s family. Gill further said that many have resorted to sell their homes and plots of land and take out loans in order to pay for extravagant weddings. This, he claimed, “could go a long way in checking female foeticide” because a girl child would no longer be viewed as a burden.
He spoke about his personal experience. In a wedding which he attended in Phagwara in 2019, he saw as many as 285 food trays and saw that no one touched the food from at least 129 of those trays. “It had all gone to waste,” he said.
As per the Bill, only 100 guests should be invited from both sides of the family, and dishes served should not exceed 10, gifts for the newlyweds should not exceed Rs 2,500.
The MP said he had implemented the same in his family, when his son and daughter were married off, there weren’t more than 30-40 guests, The Indian Express reported.
Although the chances of this MP Jasbir Gill’s Bill being passed in the Parliament is very low. This isn’t the first time a Bill has come up to cap lavish Indian weddings. In December 2017, BJP’s Gopal Chinayya Shetty, the Lok Sabha MP from Mumbai North introduced a Bill which sought to prevent and prohibit the extravagance of weddings and ceremonies in various parts of the country.