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Stage set for royal wedding

- BJP leader KV Singh Deo’s daughter marries hotel tycoon
File picture of the bride and the groom at their engagement

Bhubaneswar, Jan. 20: The Maharaja of Patnagarh, K.V. Singh Deo, a former minister who heads the state unit of the BJP, is pulling out all stops to make the wedding of his only child, Nivritti Kumari Singh Deo, a grand affair.

Nivritti, 28, who studied hotel management in Switzerland, is set to tie the knot with Lakshyaraj Singh Mewar, 29, of Udaipur here tomorrow.

Everything about this marriage seems to be gilt-edged beginning with the invitations replete with honorifics preceding each name. If K.V. Singh Deo is addressed as Maharaja Saheb Shriman and his wife, Sangeeta, a former MP, as Her Highness Maharani Sahiba, the bride takes the title of Maharaj Kumari Jema Moni Sahiba. In the same vein, the groom, Lakshyaraj, son of Arvind Singh Mewar and Vijayraj Kumari Mewar of Udaipur, is referred to as Baojiraj Saheb Shriman.

Around 5,000 guests, a majority of them representing various royal families of the country, are likely to attend the wedding with most of the star hotels in the city booked for them. The imposing guest list also includes the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi. BJP national president Rajnath Singh, leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley, Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje, herself a royal, and her Chhattisgarh counterpart Raman Singh are expected to attend along with some other high profile party leaders.

An elephant will lead the marriage procession, while the bidai dinner, where the guests will bless the newly-weds on Wednesday, will take place at Janata Maidan in the heart of the city. A grand pavilion resembling a royal place has been built for the event. The elephant, in fact, was seen enjoying royal hospitality munching on sugarcane sticks in a corner of the maidan this afternoon even as nearly 150 workers gave final touches to the grand pavilion.

Sources said the two chefs managing the wedding kitchen were struggling to get the right kind of spices. Some of the cooking ingredients have already been brought from Delhi, but they might need more.

A special wedding secretariat has been set up to ensure the comfort of the guests and the smooth conduct of proceedings. The invitations came accompanied with a booklet that explained, among other things, the dress code, the gift protocol and the security arrangements during the wedding. Done in FAQ format, it is supposed to serve as a guide for the guests attending the event, which, the office of K.V. Singh Deo described as a “strictly private affair”.

Sources said Nivritti and Lakshyaraj met around two years ago at the wedding of latter’s sister. Lakshyaraj is in the hospitality sector and looks after the Resort Hotels (HRH) Group, founded by his grandfather, Bhagwat Singh Mewar, as its executive director.