Bhopal : What would you generally gift a newlymarried couple? A Madhya Pradesh minister has gifted 'mogris' — wooden bats used to wash clothes — to nearly 700 brides, and advised them to use it on their husbands if they turn alcoholic or harass them.
The gifted 'mogri' bears a message 'sharabiyon ke sutara hetu bhent, police nahi bolegi' (gift for beating drunkards, police will not intervene).
Gopal Bhargava, the state minister of panchayati raj and rural development, gifted the bats during a mass marriage ceremony on Saturday in his home town Garhakota in Sagar district.
"Whenever I visit any rural or urban area in my constituency, women complain about their husband's drinking habit. They inform me that whatever little they earn is snatched away by their husband for alcohol," Bhargava said on Sunday.
"The idea of gifting 'mogri' struck me when a woman asked me whether she should get her husband to stop drinking by beating him with this wooden plank," the minister said. So he ordered 10,000 bats to be gifted to women "suffering at the hands of their alcoholic husbands".
Bhargava, however, urged the women to first have a word with their husbands and make them understand the ill-effects of drinking and if they don't listen, then let the 'mogri' do the talking.The minister sees nothing wrong in it and feels that it is a step towards bringing social change, which is necessary to deal with the menace of alcoholism.