Uzbekistan plans to fine people for excessive partying

New bill proposes crackdown on 'disruptive' weddings and funerals

Peter Stubley
Sunday 27 October 2019 19:44
A wedding party in the southern Uzbek town of Termez
A wedding party in the southern Uzbek town of Termez

Raucous parties could be banned in Uzbekistan under new laws proposed by the country’s Ministry of Justice.

Fines of about £180 will reportedly be issued in a crackdown on “disruptive weddings, family celebrations, campaigns and ceremonies”.

It follows a series of attempts to limit lavish festivities in a country where 11.4 per cent of the population live below the poverty line and the average monthly wage is around £155,

Last month Uzbek parliament passed regulations limiting wedding celebrations to 250 guests, two musical acts and a three-car motorcade.

Events are now only allowed to take place between the hours of 11am and 6pm, while mourning ceremonies must not last more than three days.

Under the new draft legislation party organisers could be fined £180 and the owners of the venue hosting the event could be slapped with penalties of £545, according to news website Eurasianet. Repeat offences within a year would be punished with fines of £935

Several members of the public have already commented favourably on the plans, with one complaining that “we have to go into debt for luxury bridesmaids.”

But senator Iqbol Mirzo raised concerns families may not be able to afford the fines.

Uzbekistan’s president, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, has repeatedly criticised the amount of money spent on lavish parties, which can leave families heavily in debt.

“Instead of spending money on 20kg of meat, you had better paint the home of a poor man or buy a TV set for his family,” he said, suggesting “an ordinary man” would ”sooner hang himself” to foot the bill for his daughters’ weddings.

An average Uzbek wedding is said to cost around £15.600, with many ceremonies requiring catering for hundred guests and the rental of several limousines.

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