A lot of girls in India pursue higher studies so that they are not forced to get married by their parents at an early age. However, Rashmi (22), found an alternative to higher studies to avoid marriage. Rashmi, who did not want to give away her parents’ entire property to an education institute in the name of fees, chose to send her Aadhaar Card photo to the boy her father had chosen for her for marriage, and got herself rejected.
After this first-of-its-kind incident, many girls have taken a cue from it and shooed boys away by sending them their Aadhaar Card photos. “Every time I log in on Facebook, I receive messages like ‘Send n*des’ from unknown boys. After getting fed up of blocking them, I started sending them my Aadhaar Card photo so they’d themselves make the move and block me,” said a Mumbai girl at the request of anonymity.
Rashmi’s father has made several requests to the Government of India to issue a new Aadhaar Card to Rashmi so that he can get her married. “Every time I visit the Aadhaar centre, I have to wait in the queue to report my problem. However, due to serpentine queues, the Aadhaar office gets closed every evening before my turn arrives,” says Rashmi’s father, who claims that he has returned unsuccessful from the Aadhaar centre over 50 times.
When we spoke to Rashmi about the incident, she refused sending her Aadhaar Card pictures to boys to avoid getting married. “Why would I show people how I look without the 345 filters I apply on my pictures? I never sent my Aadhaar Card pictures to anyone. They may have found it out from the big data leak of Aadhaar Cards from the government’s website,” she said. She further said that she is thankful to the government for not being able to secure her personal details, which helped her avoid the marriage.