Update: The Mumbai dabbawalas went shopping for the royal wedding! Just a day before Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are scheduled to say “I do,” they bought authentic “Marathi” presents for the couple. For Prince Harry, they purchased a saffron coloured ‘feta’— a traditional Maharashtrian turban—while Meghan Markle will be gifted a ‘Paithani’ saree.
Wonder what the royal couple will think about this ‘Saprem Bhet’ (Gift of love).
The wedding ceremony of British royal, Prince Harry, and actor, Meghan Markle, will be held on May 19, 2018. Invitations have been sent out, and grand preparations for the royal wedding are in full swing.
People across the world are looking forward to the big day, and our very own Mumbai dabbawalas are set to join the celebration in their own unique way!
The relationship between the dabbawalas and the British royals goes back to 2003 when Prince Charles—the Prince of Wales—had visited them in Mumbai. They had a fruitful interaction, and the Prince was hugely impressed with their work. Consequently, two office-bearers of dabbawalas’ organisation were invited to the wedding of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles in April 2005.
This year, as Prince Charles’ son ties the knot with Meghan Markle, the dabbawalas will celebrate the joyous occasion in Mumbai.
Subhash Talekar, the spokesperson of Mumbai Dabbawala Association, said, “We have an emotional connect with the British royal family. Prince Charles had invited us to his wedding some years ago, and the family treated us with a lot of respect when we were there.”
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The tiffin service of the dabbawalas is famous not only in India but globally. Their system of delivering over 2,00,000 lunches every single day for the past 125 years (except for one day of bandh) has been studied by top management institutes in the world.
Not only do they provide paid service to people like you and me, they even extend their support to patients in the Tata Memorial hospital, KEM hospital and the Wadia hospital, by providing free food to their relatives.
On May 19, 2018, the dabbawalas will distribute sweets to celebrate the royal wedding.
“We have decided that along with the good quality food that we provide to the relatives of patients outside these hospitals every day, we will distribute sweets on May 19 to mark the wedding,” Talekar said. They will also distribute sweets among the poor and hungry people on streets.
Talekar added that they also plan on gifting traditional Maharashtrian wedding outfits to the royal couple, and will be sending them through the British Consulate.
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)