Patna: A bride in Bihar refused to marry a man after he sought additional dowry just ahead of their wedding a day after the chief minister, Nitish Kumar, appealed to the masses to boycott those who seek or take dowry.

Reports said the bride’s family members had gone to the groom’s home in Harkhauli village in Gopalganj district on Friday evening for the Tilak ceremony when his family sought additional money in hard cash, leaving them stunned.

The bride family expressed their inability to pay the money and tried to persuade their would-be in-laws, but they remained adamant. As a result of this, the Tilak ceremony was delayed for hours.

Reports said soon after the bride came to know about the incident, she talked to her family over the phone and announced her decision not to marry the “greedy” groom. The wedding was therefore cancelled and her family returned home the same night.

“I am proud of my daughter. She has showed the greedy people the way,” said the bride’s father, Yogesh Singh, to media on Sunday, adding they were humiliated by the request for more dowry.

Police have not registered a case, but have hailed the girl for taking such a bold decision. “The girl is a dowry in itself. The society will have to change its outlook about dowry,” said police inspector Sarita Kumari, describing the demand for dowry as a ‘devaluation’ of social values.

The incident comes barely a day after the chief minister appealed to the masses to boycott the weddings of those taking dowry.

“If you get any invitations for attending wedding, first try to find out if they have taken dowry or not. Boycott it if they have taken. That will bring massive change in the society,” Kumar has been quoted as telling the masses.

Dowry demands have been claiming thousands of lives every year. Keeping the seriousness of the situation in mind, the state government in Bihar has decided to launch a massive campaign against the existing system on the pattern of the government’s intensive campaign against liquor.