One-year-old boy ‘marries’ dog for health and wealth

March 24th, 2008 - 4:37 pm ICT by admin  

Bhubaneswar, March 24 (IANS) Tribal residents of a slum in Orissa ‘married’ a 12-month-old boy to a dog in the hope that it will bring the boy prosperity and good health in the future. The ‘marriage’ was solemnised according to traditional rites Sunday at Munda Sahi in the coastal district of Jagatsinghpur, some 120 km from the state capital here.

A human couple performed the role of the parents of the ‘bride’.

The marriage started with an exchange of rings while the priests chanted mantras. The dog was dressed in a new yellow sari. The boy put a vermilion dot on her forehead and bangles on her legs.

The priests performed the rituals on an earthen dais, especially made for the occasion.

Father of the boy Radha Mohan Singh told IANS that the wedding followed an age-old tradition. “We perform such marriages after the first tooth of a child falls off,” he said.

“People of our community believe that if a child marries a canine after breaking his teeth, it will ensure him health and prosperity in the future,” he said. “After the marriage, the couple will stay in our home.”

While over a hundred villagers feasted after the occasion, dogs on the streets were fed bread.

Singh presented a radio, a silver ring and a chain to the dog and saris and clothes to designated parents of the ‘bride’.

“I am happy that this ritual will bring prosperity to my son,” the child’s mother Gita Singh said.

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