Pune: Kanjarbhat couple ties knot by rejecting ‘virginity test’

Written by Chandan Haygunde | Pune | Updated: May 15, 2018 2:29:13 am

Police were deployed for the May 12 wedding. (Express Photo)

It was a wedding with a difference, as Vivek Tamaichikar married Aishwarya Bhat in Pimpri on May 12 by taking an open stand against the alleged practice of “virginity test”, in which a newly married woman from Kanjarbhat community is made to give proof of virginity on the wedding night.

Both Vivek and Aishwarya belong to Kanjarbhat community, a nomadic tribe with presence in different states. A postgraduate from TISS in Mumbai, Vivek is founder of WhatsApp group “Stop the V-ritual”, which includes youths from the community and a few elders who have raised voice against their caste panchayat for allegedly conducting the practice. Aishwarya is granddaughter of former Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation Mayor Kavichand Bhat and has been supporting Vivek’s movement.

In their marriage invitation card, Vivek and Aishwarya had appealed to guests to participate in the marriage to strengthen their fight against the “virginity test”.

Police were deployed at the marriage ceremony to prevent any untoward incident.

“Only rituals that cause no harm were performed during our marriage. No unfair practices like ‘virginity tests’ or ‘Khushi’ were followed. Some elders in the community may not have liked it. But mine and Aishwarya’s parents supported us. The marriage ceremony ended happily and peacefully,” Vivek said.

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