Catching ’wife’? Be careful, or you’ll be caught yourself

February 21, 2017 - 10:24

The practice of ‘wife catching’ is a longstanding tradition. However, the tradition has a new obstacle: camera phones.

Catching ’wife’? Be careful, or you’ll be caught yourself

The practice of ‘wife catching’ is a longstanding tradition. However, the tradition has a new obstacle: camera phones.

A video clip featuring an ethnic girl trying to escape from the practice in central Nghệ An Province has gone viral. The poor girl was seen taking desperate efforts when forced onto a motorbike and driven away by a group of young men.  

Finally, she managed to get herself free after some brilliant martial arts moves and loud screams for help.

Although the young men seemed to be enjoying themselves, the video clip quickly caught the eyes of local police, who did not find it funny at all.

Lieutenant Colonel Đinh Anh Dũng, head of Quỳ Hợp District’s Police Department, said that police were investigating the men’s wife-catching tactics.

Initial investigations showed that the girl and a boy in the group had a dating affair when she came back from the south for Tết holiday. The girl later decided to turn back to her job after the holiday was over.

Afraid that the romantic relationship could end, the boy, together with his friends, organised to catch the girl when she waiting for the bus to the south, with dreams of a happy ending.

Ironically, the boy might be the one be caught.

Lương Thị Phượng, vice office chief of the district’s People’s Committee, said the practice of wife catching was a ceremonial event for ethnic minorities. The tradition requires consensual agreement between the couple and their two families.

Dũng said the boy could face up to two years in prison if found guilty illegal arrest, and his friends could be prosecuted for being partners in crime.

In case his behavior is deemed not enough for criminal prosecution, the group will be given administrative fines.

So, remember to ask for the bride’s permission before taking her away, or you’ll pay more than a dowry’s worth of đồng.


Nghệ An Province farmers have faced a famously familiar headache: corn fields ravaged by rats. Tens of hectares of corn fields have been left nothing but corn pulps.

To save their corn, farmers bought  mouse poison from a local shop.

Oddly, after ten days of spreading the chemical around the corn field, the only change was that the rats were chubbier.

Farmer Hồ Trọng Mão in Diễn Trường Commune said he caught five rats for a test and surprisingly found out that they were alive, despite being pumped with the toxic.

Local farmers have immediately reported the incident to the local Plant Protection Station. The station has taken samples for test.

While scientists labour away with their lab coats, the farmers took a more old school tactic. Using shovels and buckets to kill the rats, they killed as many as 4,000 rats in a few days. – VNS