For 7-year-old Mukesh Kerayi, the horoscopes held doom and gloom. It suggested that his first wife will die young and as if maternal burdens weren’t enough for his young shoulders to bear, he grew a tooth in the upper part of his mouth, a most ominous omen in his hometown of Jharkhand, India.
It was with this in mind that his family arranged a marriage to the fated first wife, a dog, that way there will be no teary eyes when it passes on. It is said that every dog has its day and for this dog, it was no puppy affair.
For the big day, the family dressed the dog in a bridal outfit and the village turned out for the celebrations just like a normal wedding.
They danced and cheered as though it was Mukesh’s real life wedding.
His grandfather, Ashok Kumar Leyangi, 43, said: ‘We believe that the marriage will ward off any bad omen attached to the boy. This is traditional practice in our tribal community and we still believe in these old customs. We feel that it is our adult responsibility to keep our children safe and happy this way.’’
These marriages usually take place between January 15 and January 21 each year.
The government in India is still trying to educate rural and tribal communities that these acts of superstition are wrong, but despite these efforts, many of the region’s tribal communities still follow horoscopes and other superstitions religiously.
The family added that the dog is now back on the streets and is not living at their home.