Apne Harry Ki Shaadi Hai: Mumbai Dabbawalas To Gift Shaadi Ka Jora To The Royal Couple
Prince Harry may be royalty, and fifth-in-line to the British throne, but to the Mumbai Dabbawalas, he is the youngest son of their friend, Prince Charles.
File photo of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. (Image: AP)
Mumbai Dabbawalas -- who in their traditional white outfits and Gandhi caps, ferry more than two lakh tiffin boxes across the city every day -- are gearing up to celebrate Prince Harry's wedding with American actress, Meghan Markle in a traditional way.
"Apne Harry ki shaadi hai, toh uska jashn toh Mumbai Dabbawalas zaroor manayenge (our Harry is getting married, so of course the Mumbai Dabbawalas will celebrate)," said Subhash Talekar, the spokesperson of Mumbai Dabbawala Association.
Prince Harry may be royalty, and fifth-in-line to the British throne, but to the Mumbai Dabbawalas, he is the youngest son of their friend, Prince Charles. "Humare dost ke ghar mein shaadi hain, unke bete ki shaadi hai (There will be a wedding at our friend's house, his son is getting married)," said Talekar about the royal wedding.
Mumbai Dabbawalas are really fond of Prince Charles, whom they met in 2003, during his Mumbai visit. Charles, like most big management schools, was intrigued by the Mumbai Dabbawalas' business model and their ability to accurately and punctually deliver tiffins across the city, with clockwork precision. Therefore, he visited the Dabbawalas and praised their accomplishments; since then, he Dabbawalas have thought of the Prince of Wales as their friend.
"In Indian mythology, there is a magical stone called Paras; that stone could turn iron into gold. We felt very similar when Prince Charles visited us; it felt like his golden touch has rubbed off on us as well," said Talekar.
"After Diana madam's death, when Prince Charles married Camilla madam, he formally invited dabbawalas to attend his wedding. Two of our men even went and attended the ceremony. So, if you think of it, Prince Charles is our friend," added Talekar with pride.
The Dabbawalas have kept up their end of the friendship for all these years. They also presented 'bahu' Kate Middleton with a traditional saree when she visited India with Prince William. Now, with Harry and Meghan's royal wedding approaching in just two days, shopping is in full swing for the dabbawalas to pick out the most perfect gift for the royal couple.
"We dabbawalas are Marathi and in our culture when two people get married the groom wears a salwar kurta with pagri and the bride wears a traditional saree. So, we are buying these things for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle for their wedding. We plan to send these things to London for the couple's wedding," said Talekar. They are in fact heading to Lalbaug today to pick out the gifts for Harry and Meghan. However, apart from gifts, they are also planning to distribute food and sweets among the poor on the day of the royal wedding.
"On the day of Harry and Meghan's wedding, along with food, we will also distribute sweets among the poor," said Talekar. Apart from that, they will also give sweets and food to the relatives of patients, who sit outside Tata Memorial hospital, KEM hospital and Wadia hospital.
Prince Harry is all set to marry actress Meghan Markle on 19 May 2018 at St George Chapel in Windsor.
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