The best thing about Punjabis is that they love to have fun and gaiety whether it is a simple birthday party or a vivacious wedding, though most often quite loud and over the top.
Here are things that you need to know about a Punjabi wedding:-
The Roka Pre-Wedding Ceremony
Attended by close family and friends, this ceremony is usually initiated by the bride’s family where they visit the groom’s place to officially stamp the relationship.
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Chunni Chadai and Sagai or Engagement
In the Chunni ceremony, the groom’s family present their would-be daughter-in-law a traditional red coloured long scarf called the Chunni in Hindi. The Chunni is usually presented by the groom’s mother and is placed over her head to cover her face. This event is followed by Sagai where the groom and the bride exchange rings. Ladies from the groom’s family feed a special sweet dish prepared by boiling rice in milk to the bride.
Another typical feature of a Punjabi wedding. The music and dance is not restricted to Punjabi folklore only, happening and upbeat Hindi Bollywood songs and even some foot-tapping Western music are nowadays part of the ceremony. The event happens at the bride’s and the groom’s place separately. Friends and relatives of both families dance their heart out at the event.
The Mehendi ceremony
This happens a day before the marriage and involves the application of Mehendi or henna on the hands and feet of the bride primarily and also that of the groom’s. Mehendi artists are called over to the girl’s and the boy’s residence and all members of the family and friends stay awake that night and have the Mehendi applied to their hands and palm.
The night before the D-day all family members stay awake till late at night. The maternal aunt of the bride, called Mami in Hindi carries a decorated brass Khada or vessel on her head while other ladies try to dislodge the vessel using a stick.
Chooda are red and ivory coloured bangles that are first purified and then the bride’s maternal uncle and aunt slip the bangles onto the arms of the bride. Sisters and friends then tie Kalire around the bangles.
Haldi ceremony – a paste made from turmeric, sandalwood, rose water and oil is applied to the bride and the groom. This is done on the day of the wedding.
This is the ceremony where the groom leaves for the wedding venue on a mare. The mare is decked up nicely and is fed lentil before leaving.
The groom and the bride exchange garlands on a stage that is usually accompanied by fun and competition from both sides.
Phere and Kanyadaan
The couple takes seven rounds around a sacred fire. Before this, the parents of the bride give her away to the groom.
Joota Chhupana – an event where the bride’s sisters hide the groom’s shoes and return them only after the groom pays a ransom.
It is time now for the bride to leave her parent’s home and set off for her new abode.
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