Parsis: The Zoroastrians of India Pakistan and The World

Why are so many Parsis unmarried?

Minoo Shroff, chairman of Bombay Parsi Panchayat, feels most Parsis are very fussy about their choice of life partner

One third of Parsis do not marry, according to a yet-to-be published study initiated by the Bombay Parsi Panchayat (BPP) in coordination with the Tata Institute of Social Sciences.

Some of the reasons for not marrying are failure to find a suitable partner, desire to be independent and putting career first.

The study also says that 15 per cent of Parsis do not marry under the pretext of looking after the aged in their family.

Very fussy

Minoo Shroff, chairman of BPP, said, “Most Parsis are very fussy about their choice of partner. The pool of youngsters for progeny is low.”

One in 16 Parsis does not have adequate privacy, which prevents them from marrying early. Shroff said it is one of the priorities of the BPP to provide an independent house to newlyweds.

Dhan Baria (64), a social worker, contests Shroff’s claims. She preferred to take care of her ailing mother after she suffered a paralytic stroke in 1990.

According to her, the root of the problem is housing. “While the BPP promises to provide separate houses to newlyweds, the list of unprocessed applications for houses are as old as 15 to 17 years.”

“The BPP gives houses only to those who pay lakhs under the table,” she said.

Home alone

Dr Viraf Jehangir Kapadia (50), who lives at Godrej Baug on Napean Sea Road with his parents and brother, said getting an independent house is the biggest problem for young Parsis. “Girls want their own house, but men are unable to provide this.

“I met a few girls for marriage, but they wanted me to have my own house,” he said.

He said the BPP, which promises to care for Parsis from womb to tomb, has failed on this issue.


Dr Viraf Jehangir Kapadia (50)

Profession: Doctor

Reason for not marrying: Parsi girls want to stay in an independent house. Getting a separate house is a big problem. I would still like to give marriage a shot if I can find a suitably educated person, who matches my mental wavelength.

Dhan Baria (64)

Profession: Social worker

Reason for not marrying: I gave priority to my career. I also had to care for my paralytic mother, so it wasn’t possible to get married then. I would like to have a suitable Parsi life partner.

Rohinton Tata (51)

Profession: Restaurant manager

Reason for not marrying: I did not have an independent house. I met eight to ten girls, but they did not want to live with my parents. This was not financially viable. I am still looking.

Sanobar Conductor (47)

Profession: Marketing manager

Reason for not marrying: I want to live independently and not with my three unmarried sisters, but do not want to be bothered with children. I wish I were a boy. I don’t wish to marry.

(Name changed on request)

Original article here