Rajasthani Brides Defying Societal Norms one Horse Ride at a Time

    Rajasthani Brides

    Indian society has always been quite vocal about putting out gender roles for girls and boys and even today social evils like female infanticide are very much prevalent. In a bid to change the mindset of the masses, people have started acting on the idea of gender equality. A similar wave of gender defying trend can be seen in Rajasthan.

    In the past few months, Rajasthan has witnessed not just an active participation from the government’s end but apparently the public is also stepping up to promote idea of gender equality. Mentioned below are the examples of brides who defied odds by deciding to ride on a horse instead of the groom and presented quite an example for others to follow.

    • Leela Meghwal


    Leela Meghwal, a 23-year old bride in the Pali district of Rajasthan dared to do something that was completely shocking for people. She rode a mare in her own wedding instead of his groom. The girl’s family was even threatened to carry out the procession but that didn’t stop her from taking the ride. The rituals took place under police protection and Leela was happily married to Himmat Ram.

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    • Gargi Ahlawat

    Gargi, an MBA from UK, is the daughter of BJP MP Santosh Ahlawat who was herself involved in the promotional campaign of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao program. It was a sight worth capturing when Gargi rode a horse-carriage and led a procession in Jhunjhunu as a part of the Bandori ritual. In fact, she took the ride for three days in different parts of the district to send out the message of gender equality.

    • Neha Khichar

    A similar yet rare sight was when Neha Khichar, an IIT graduate, took part in the pre-wedding ritual of Bandori by riding a horse. Not just this, she was in fact dressed in a sherwani and pagdi while taking the ride. Neha is working with Indian Oil at Mathura refinery. The decision was made by her family as they wanted to convey the message that sons and daughters must be treated equally and should be given equal opportunities.


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