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Wanted: A suitable ‘communist’ groom

Kolkata: Twenty-five-years old Manisha Prasad (name changed on request) has a different demand from her prospective husband. Unlike other girls, she does not care for money or looks of the groom. All that she is bothered about is – his political ideology.

The otherwise calm and docile girl, from Bandel, a sub-urban area in Bengal, is very clear about the fact that the boy that her family chooses for her should have Left ideology. Talking to eNewsroom over the phone, she firmly says, “I am a proud communist and I want to marry a man of the same ideology. I am not ready to compromise on this demand of mine.”

On being asked why make such a demand, she reveals, “I have grown up with this ideology. I feel communists are liberal and open minded. They treat women well and are better husbands. Also, the fact that I wouldn’t have to compromise on my political ideology, if I marry a person of communist background, made me and my family to place such an advertisement in a Bengali daily’s matrimonial section.”

Interestingly, Prasad, is neither from a Bengali family, which in most cases foster this ideology in their kids, nor her parents are supporters of this ideology. On the contrary, she is a girl of Bihari origin, who grew up in a Bengali household, thereby, imbibing on to their culture and ideologies, in an organic manner.

“She is as good as my own sister. Despite our biological parents being different, we share a strong bond. She in fact lives with us and we in consultation with her real parents placed this advertisement,” says Dipatanj Dasgupta, foster brother of Prasad. It is Dasgupta, who had placed the advertisement.

He further reveals, “The fact that she is originally from Bihar, also made us add this particular demand for the groom to be a communist in our ‘must have’ list. One can’t deny the fact that most people with a Left ideology are liberal and well mannered, who treat their women well. Manisha has been living with us since she was in standard VI and has a liberal outlook towards the world. It was but obvious to single out a man, who would not crush her ideology and beliefs.”

Was it only this or some other reasons too? Reacting to that, Dasgupta adds, “Well, yes, you can say so. Recently, we have witnessed many Bengalis turning pro-BJP. It’s their choice. But we are communist and we want to remain so, always. Getting our girl married into a family with a different political ideology, would mean that at some point of time our girl would have to compromise. And we didn’t want this, hence this collective decision to place this very specific advertisement.”

For many, this specification did come as a surprise. “Well, I did see this advertisement on Ganashakti. I was pleasantly surprised, about how a family was trying to keep its political ideology intact. It was a bit funny too,” said Soumyajit Rajak, an active SFI activist from Jadavpur University.

On the other hand many were upset with the family’s demand. “We are no longer taking calls on that number, as people are calling and abusing us for our choice of political ideology. Some of the WhatsApp messages are so offensive. I guess, the advertisement’s snap shot, has gone viral and we are being abused for no rhyme or reason. But yes, we have also received a lot of appreciations too,” Dasgupta added.

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