Only in India: Audience Members Help Woman Choose a Husband
Posted on September 3, 2010
Audience members at a traditional swayamvar ceremony helped Bhanumati Vyas select a husband by voting for Rajendra Rawal.
Swayamvar is an ancient Hindu practice wherein a woman chooses a husband from among a list of suitors. The swayamvar for Bhanumati attracted 36 eligible studs keen on making the 55-year-old widow their lifelong partner in life, bingo, and whatever else the elderly like to do.
The event featured three rounds. Ten suitors were select during the first round, and three were selected during the second round. Bhanumati then had to make her final decision.
According to the Times of India, Bhanumati made three separate trips to the stage, but walked off every single time. She finally gave up and decided to poll the audience—kind of like using a lifeline on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. They opted for Rawal, who surprisingly enough was the one whom she herself was feeling the most.
“Rawal’s name was at the forefront of my mind, so when the audience voted for him, I took it as divine intervention,” she said.
And so begins a new life for the poor widow. This will be her third marriage. Her first husband divorced her, whereas her second husband died. Afterward all of Bhanumati’s children and relatives abandoned her, forcing her to move into a nursing home.
She tried looking for a man there, but everybody was over 65 and in need of lots and lots of viagra. Soon after she was approached by a member of the Vina Mulye Amulya Sewa (VMAS), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to helping the elderly find lovers. They helped put together a swayamvar for her and well, here she is now—about to be married to a man who she’s only met once.
It’s quite an unusual way to get married, though I suppose it’s no different than an American dating show merely taken to the next level. Regardless, one has to wonder whether the relationship will last. If not, Bhanumati may have to attend another swayamvar!