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Cvs are perhaps selectively showing half picture. Naata pratha has nowhere been mentioned as an exclusively surrogacy oriented custom- not even its prime aim (except of course in some individual instances). So what Cvs panchyat dialogue was hinting is perhaps entirely oriented for Cvs need towards the present track or their take on this custom (unless, in some particular pockets of Rajasthan, if this happens to be the prime aim...then more knowledgeable person may mention such an area).
Root of the colloquial word 'Naata' means a 'relationship'...where the convenience is more to circumvent messy 'divorces'-untangling from existing marriages (frequently by women wanting to walk away from an unhappy marriage, especially when she has found a supportive paramour!) or simply to bypass a ritual hindu marriage (as seen in some instances of Dewarvatu- marriage of a widow to younger brother-in-law, where the aim may be as diverse as paucity of brides, concern for existing children or simply preservation of family property). This custom is almost unthinkable in higher castes like Brahmin, Rajputs or Jains.
Codes and customs around this custom must be diverse from region to region- am confused and ignorant on many aspects- especially legal ones ( can not Phooli complaint her unwillingness from the outset or later capitulation and betrayals?). Hope Cvs will unfold an educating picture.
P.S. In a side note, though here first wife is deliberately drawn as a commanding presence. What hold she would have on a capricious family like Bharat's is not known. In practice, childless woman would face even greater ignominy and humiliation by the likes of bharat's and from the incoming 'naatin' wife who bears a child- and then held in higer value, as well as source of further progenies!
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