Weddings flag off a whole new life ahead, one that is sure to be filled with joys and sorrows in equal measure. In India, weddings are lavish affairs, even for those who cannot afford them, and often become a display of wealth and extravagance than a mindful, simple celebration of two people vowing to spend the rest of their lives together.
Logeswaran and Geetanjali Ritika decided to strike a balance for their wedding. This Tirupur-based couple threw a huge reception for their loved ones but ensured it was not wasteful in any way. They opted for a green party and shunned any kind of plastic at their wedding, which took place in Tirupur recently.
They swapped plastic tumblers with the ones made with copper, served delicious food to their guests prepared using organic ingredients, including chillies, tomatoes, and onions. Even the plates were made of maize. Even the drinking water was the rainwater harvested especially for the occasion.
Ravi, Geetanjali's father, was at the forefront of arranging this unique celebration. A volunteer of Vanathukul Tirupur, a three-year old organisation working to increase the green cover of Tirupur district, he sought the help of fellow volunteers to make the wedding a reality. He told The News Minute that the intention behind taking this now unpopular route was to revive the traditional way of hosting weddings.
Kumar Duraiswamy, the project director of Vanathukul Tirupur, listed some of the changes they made to the typical wedding menu:
We ditched ice-creams and beeda (paan), and instead served herbal tea for dessert. The wedding menu included maize potato bonda, mini banana blossom vadai for starters and idly, horse gram sambar rice, tomato sambar and other preparations for mains. The dessert spread had palm sugar dry ginger milk, herbal tea, mint lemon juice, wild banana, betel nut and slaked lime.
They even set up stalls where sellers of organic sweets could display their wares. Sweets like gram flour Mysore pak, foxtail millet coconut barfi and green gram jaggery laddoo were available for guests to purchase and relish. Ravi explained,
We wanted to set up a network for these shopkeepers and help them sell their products. On the other hand, people were sensitised about using organic products over plastic and artificially produced stuff.
And the wedding was a smashing success among the local people. The official guest list included 3,500 people, but a 2,500 more turned up to see what was going on.