New Bill Prevents Uzbeks from Throwing Expensive Parties

Category: Human Interest


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. incur / ɪnˈkɜr / (v) – to experience something bad or unpleasant as a result of an action

    My father will incur large amounts of debt if he continues to collect sports cars.

  2. compliance / kəmˈplaɪ əns / (n) – the act of obeying or cooperating with rules, requests, or orders

    The supervisor will hold weekly meetings to review employees’ compliance with the new regulations.

  3. extravagant / ɪkˈstræv ə gənt / (adj) – spending more money than what is necessary

    The extravagant birthday party cost the new parents almost a hundred thousand dollars.

  4. diminish / dɪˈmɪn ɪʃ / (v) – to lessen or decrease something

    I hope my headache would diminish after taking this medicine.

  5. skepticism / ˈskɛp təˌsɪz əm / (n) – doubt or lack of trust in something

    I find the public’s skepticism over the budget increase reasonable since the government announced it too late.


Read the text below.

A new bill in Uzbekistan proposes to fine people who throw expensive parties.

Uzbekistan’s Ministry of Justice intends to fine people up to $230 for throwing costly parties. Venues that host these festivities could also receive penalties up to $700 for the first offense and incur $1,200 for repeat offenses.

By January 1, 2020, festivities will only be allowed to start and end at specific times, and guests for celebrations like weddings and birthdays will be limited to 250. Police, tax inspectors, and state prosecutors will also be notified about the celebrations so that they can monitor compliance with the new regulations.

The bill was proposed to reduce extravagant celebrations in a country where the average monthly wage is only around $200. The legislation also aims to diminish the pressure felt by people to work hard just to hold expensive parties.

A common Uzbek wedding happens within four days where rituals heavily rooted in the Uzbek culture are done. It is also attended by over 400 guests. Such expensive celebrations usually cause families to be in great debt. Therefore, young Uzbeks usually work overseas for months or years to save up for their wedding ceremonies.

The legislation has been met with support and skepticism on social media. Many social media users said that the regulation can prevent wastefulness and help Uzbeks avoid working abroad just to make money for these events.

However, some doubt that the legislation will be effective. They even challenged officials to set an example in observing the new regulations, especially since previous campaigns have failed to put an end to Uzbeks’ lavish celebrations.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

• Considering that extravagant parties are part of Uzbekistan’s culture, do you think the bill will be effective in preventing Uzbeks from throwing expensive parties? Why or why not?
• Do you think the government’s initiative to prevent citizens from throwing expensive parties is fair? Why or why not?

Discussion B

• Do you think it is possible to make changes to activities or events that are rooted in people’s traditions or culture? Why or why not?
• If you could change a tradition or cultural practice in your country, what would it be and why?