Around 252 couples tied the knot in a mass wedding hosted by Surat's favourite diamond merchant Mahesh Savani. The wedding included five Muslim couples, a Christian couple and two women who are reportedly HIV positive. A philanthropist, Savani believes giving away brides is a blessing from God, and has therefore, been organising and funding mass weddings for fatherless women since 2012.
The merchant himself performs the Hindu ritual of kanyadaan. Savani has previously given gifts to each bride, including gold, sofas and beds, and other things worth Rs 500,000 each to help them start their married life. Women who married this year in the mass function received similar privileges. When contacted, Savani said he feels it is his social responsibility to help women who can't afford their own weddings. He said he takes their responsibility as their father. He also informed that this year, he was helped by real estate developer Sanjay Movaliya. Savani began the campaign back in 2008, when one of his own employees died just days before his daughter's wedding.