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30,000 Guests and the Absurdity: S. Ravinder Hosts Colossal Wedding

March 21, 2011

30,000 guests. 95,000 square feet of reception space. 100 media outlets. 200+ reception dinner items. Dozens of models and Bollywood celebrities paid to attend.

A colossal, selfish, waste? or a perfectly moral splurge?

Wealthy, New Zealand based real estate tycoon S. Ravinder hosted 30,000 guests over a span of 5 days to celebrate the marriage of both his sons Rohit (22) and Ranjit (21) Sirigiri respectively to Divya Pushtey (21) and Shruti Bidar (20). By sheer proportion, the event seemed more like a convention than a wedding.  The celebration, which took place last month, took a whopping 3 years in making – so yes, this means that both the brides and grooms were mere teenagers when they were betrothed.

S. Ravinder’s wife, Anu Sirigiri, had pretty much started the wedding planning before her two sons had even met their respective fiances. “We had for many years thought of a grand wedding for our sons at which everyone known to us would have fun and entertainment, experiencing our hospitality and goodwill. The Project got to a good start when Anu suggested the names of Divya and Shruti on the morning of May 25, 2008,” S. Ravinder said. Well, when you have 30,000 family and friends, a wedding definitely becomes a ‘Project.’

It took me a while to decide whether I should actually blog about this madness. I usually believe that people have the right to splurge their own money, but here are a few reasons I think this was ridiculous:

1) 30,000 family & friends: I bet the blog these guys can’t even name 60% of their guests.

2) By mere coincidence, sometime while this gluttonous wedding was in progress, the Union Food minister K V Thomas proposed a limit on the amount of food served and wasted at Indian weddings.

3) I admit, the halls for most of the events looked tremendous. But that’s still no excuse for the brides to have been wearing matching Cinderella-esk ballgowns with Sweet 16 Tiaras, for the ‘Underwater’ themed reception.

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