Anuradha was one of 700-odd women who got married at a recent mass wedding organised under the Mukhyamantri Kanyadaan Yojana in Gadhakota town of Sagar, MP, where the brides got an uncommon gift — a mogri, a bat traditionally used to wash clothes. The mogri was to be used against their husbands should they take to alcohol, or against vendors who sell liquor illegally. A postgraduate in geography, Anuradha has done a PG diploma in computer applications and used to work as a computer operator. Her husband Prakash Nayak works for the electricity department. She hopes she can start working again soon.
1. How did your in-laws react when you walked into your new home with the mogri in hand?
They were all smiles. They joked, ‘Here comes a dhobin (washerwoman) who will beat us with it (mogri)’.
2. Does your husband drink?
No, he does not. I asked him before our marriage, and he insisted he did not.
3. Where do you keep the mogri?
I keep it in our room (laughs).
4. Did you know beforehand that the brides would be gifted mogris?
No, no one told us about it earlier. But we got the idea after reading the message on it (Sharabiyon ke sutara hetu bhet. Police nahin bolegi).
5. Will the mogri help bring down liquor consumption?
Yes, it will. But it would be better if the liquor shops were closed down. Closure of shops would make access to liquor difficult. My husband and I are both postgraduates in Arts. There are many in the village who are educated but not everyone understands (the ill-effects of liquor consumption).