Bride Dies In Mandap, Replaced By Her Sister… Did Her Life Or Death Mean So Little?!

I find it shocking and disturbing that a woman was so easily replaced. Her life, her presence, her absence meant nothing to those around her.

Every year, the 8th of March is celebrated as International Women’s Day. A day to honour women. A day to celebrate womanhood.

All through her life, a woman plays many roles. Daughter, sister, friend, wife, mother… these are just a few of the many caps we women wear.

We might wear the same caps and play the same roles, but our experiences are different.

My blood boils as I write this… there are a few women whose lives are cheaper than a packet of peanuts. Cheaper than dirt. Cheaper than the cheapest thing you ever imagined.

Bride so easily replaceable?!

A shocking incident that happened in Bhavnagar, Gujarat, proves this harsh reality of life.

A young bride died of a heart attack during the wedding rituals.

The hall was decked like a bride, but the joyous moments that had enveloped the place died a sudden death too. It was cloaked underneath the veil of tears and sorrow.

Hetal, the young bride’s journey ended when she was about to begin a new chapter of her life.

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I can’t imagine the shock and trauma her parents, sister, and the rest of her family would have faced.

The bereaved family, however, instead of mourning the shocking death, REPLACED her with her younger sister. Yes! You read it right!

Loving and concerned relatives suggested this alternative plan to “ensure the celebrations continued”!

And immediately, the family decided to marry Hetal’s younger sister to the guy who was to have wed her sister at the very same mandap.

While the ceremonies and celebrations continued, poor Hetal’s body was stored in cold storage.

Did Hetal’s life and its loss mean so little? Didn’t it matter to her family, to her groom?

I find it shocking and disturbing that a woman was so easily replaced. Her life. Her presence. Her absence meant nothing to those around her.

How could her parents proceed with such heartless actions? Is it even humanly possible to turn such a shattering incident into a happy one?

Marriage is a bond based on love and respect. What was the groom thinking when he agreed? Was the younger sister’s consent taken into consideration? I wonder if this bride and groom ever find it in their forced relationship.

Women’s lives are cheaper than dirt!

This incident is a time for us to introspect on the kind of society are we living in. Today’s society is dead. It has lost its conscience and righteousness.

  • It is the one where relatives tell a bereaved family to forget the death of a daughter and celebrate the wedding of another!
  • It mandates grooms have to return with the bride. It doesn’t matter that the woman he was to marry died a few moments ago. Honour is above everything else.
  • It forced the family to ignore the dead daughter lying forgotten in a cold box.
  • Sadly, in today’s time, cremations can wait, but weddings need to go on.

I still can’t fathom such things happening to women every day. Dedicating a day to celebrate a woman’s life is a meaningless gesture unless women are celebrated in reality. Unless their lives matter. Unless they are felt, heard, and seen.

Isn’t a woman’s life worth anything?

Image source: By Bodhisattva Dasgupta – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

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