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Valentine’s Day: In Gujarat’s Surat, over 10,000 students to pledge against marriage without parents’ consent

Masalawala had contacted trustees of various schools to propose the idea who all showed their support. (Representational photo)

February 14 is observed as Valentine’s day in many parts of the world, including in India, and it is celebrated differently all over the world. In India, a Surat-based therapist has come out with a unique idea to mark the occasion. The move, described as underlining the importance of family and love for parents, a pledge program has been planned where students may voluntarily promise to marry as per the consent of their parents.

According to a report by The Indian Express, over 10,000 students from various private schools in Surat are expected to take an oath on Valentine’s Day to never marry without the consent of their parents. The idea was proposed by city-based laughter therapist Kamlesh Masalawala, who runs ‘Laughter club, Crying club’ in Surat. Masalawala is also associated with several educational institutions in the city.

As part of the oath-taking, the students will recite eight lines of a poem written by city-based child psychiatrist Dr Mukul Choksi, who is also a poet. The school administrations have asked the participating students to memorise the poem for the oath taking on Thursday.

Masalawala had contacted trustees of various schools to propose the idea who all showed their support. She said that 20 schools have confirmed their participation and the ceremony will be held as per school timings in the school premises and later a program will be organised a to felicitate school trustees and principals.

“I got the idea while counselling youths. They would come to me with problems like their parents are against them marrying the person they love. I am not against the love affair, but I counsel them with appropriate reasons. I explain the importance of family and of the devotion they should have for their parents. The parents will compromise and agree to their match but they would get hurt in the process,” Masalawala told The Indian Express.

“I have proposed that students aged 17 and above should participate in the event. It is not compulsory, those students who do not want to participate are free to take their own decisions,” Masalawala added.

“Our message is that students should marry partners suggested by their parents. We are hoping that over 10,000 students will take oath on Valentine’s Day,” Masalawala said.

According to the The Indian Express, the poem is in Gujarati and it reads: ‘Jeevan Naamna Prabhu e apela uphar ne prem karishu, Keval premijan ne nahi, aakha pariwar ne prem karishu, Shani, ravi jemaj Som thi Shukrawar ne prem karishu, sikshan naamna jeevan na sacha adhar ne prem karishu, Ekaj Janne shane mate? ek hajaar ne prem karishu, Shala college, teacher, vali, salahkar ne prem karishu, Valentine ne Vasantpanchmina aa tehvar ne prem karishu, pan pehla, Maa Baap-e apela sanskar ne prem karishu. “(We will love this gift of life given by God, not just our lover, we shall love the whole family. We shall love Mondays to Fridays just as we do Saturdays and Sundays, We shall love education which is true essence of life, Why only one, we shall love a thousand, we shall love our school, college, teachers, guardian and counsellor, We shall love the festivals of Valentine’s (Day) and Vasant panchmi, but first we shall love the virtues instilled by our parents).”

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Source: Financial Express