Punjabis are large hearted people who love splendor and grandeur. They are also keen on festivals and celebrations. This nature of Punjabis also reflects in their marriage celebrations. Like other Indian weddings, a Punjabi marriage ceremony is very ritualistic but also full of fun and frolic. It is in fact one of the most colorful and musical marriage ceremonies in the country. Each ceremony is like an excuse for merriment. A Punjabi Wedding is very vibrant and celebrated like a big carnival, exhibiting splendid grandeur.
A Punjabi wedding ceremony begins with Roka which is very much like an engagement ceremony where both the family for the first time formally announces the prospective marriage. The Roka is then followed by celebrations like ‘Sagan’ and ‘Chunni Chadana’ performed at the groom’s and bride’s family respectively. The joy of a Punjabi wedding begins with the Sangeet and Mehndi ceremony from where the real fun and frolic starts. Bhangras and Giddas make a Punjabi wedding more colorful. Like other Hindu weddings phere and kanyadaan are important rituals of a Punjabi Wedding. A Punjabi Wedding ceremony solemnizes with Mangal Pheras and the bride is departed to her in laws home that very day.
Punjabis of India are known for their hospitality all over the world. These people are generally warm in their nature.
Punjabi culture is known for its richness. Like the customs and traditions all over the world, the Punjabi culture is bestowed with lot of rituals and practices. It presents most colorful aspect of Indian culture.
Sweet tongue of Punjabis often put them on top of the world. The parents often fix marriages in Punjab. The traditional practices have been amended to cope up with the changing times.
Love marriages are now days more accepted. Punjabis are generally broad-minded people who have been accepting the marriage between the inter caste people. The marriage means lots of excitement and thrill for the Punjabi people. Often lots of ceremonies are performed once boy and girl agree to marry each other.
First ceremony that takes place is the ‘roka’. The boy and girl are given sweets and some money. This is particularly done to prevent the boy and girl families for further searching the prospective partners.
After this, engagement ceremony takes place. The bride is provided outfit by the groom’s family. The traditional colors can be pink or red which are considered auspicious for the moment. Rings are exchanged between the boy and the girl.
Though there are many other cultures that follow the Chuda ceremony but it has originated from the Punjabis. Chuda is a set of red and cream ivory bangles that are touched by all the relatives and they give their blessings to the girl for a happy married life. The Chuda ceremony involves a havan or puja by a Pandit who ties a mauli on the wrist of the bride-to-be. The oldest maternal uncle and aunt are responsible for bringing the Chuda and they fast till the entire event is completed. Afterwards, the girl’s friends and family members tie kaliras to a bangle worn by the girl.
After the Chuda Ceremony comes the Vatna. In this ceremony, the girl sits facing four lamps that are constantly filled with oil. This is done to reflect the glow of the oil lamps to the girl’s face. Afterwards, a paste of turmeric powder is applied on to the girl’s face, arms and legs.
In the Ghada Ghardoli ceremony, the girl’s siblings or their spouse has to visit a temple and fill a pitcher with holy water with which the girl is then bathed.
The Vatna and Ghara Ghardoli ceremony is also performed at the Groom’s house, where the pitcher is filled by the boy’s sister-in-law. The groom’s wedding attire is presented by his maternal uncles.
After the Vatna and the Ghara Ghardoli, the boy is dressed in his wedding attire and the sehra is tied to his head, either by his father or some other elderly relative. The boy is presented with gifts and blessings by friends and family members.
The final pre-wedding ceremony is the Ghodi Chadna. The groom’s sister-in-law lines the boy’s eyes with surma and then he climbs on to the mare. Relatives then perform the ritual of Varna by using cash to ward off the evil eye from the boy.
Marriage Venue Rituals
When the boy’s barat reaches the wedding venue, the relatives of the girl welcome the boy’s relatives with gifts of clothes and cash and garlands.
The boy and the girl exchange Varmalas, which are basically garlands made of flowers. The friends and family then presents the bride and groom with gifts. Afterwards, the boy is asked to sit on the mandap and along with the pandit he chants various mantras. The sisters and cousins of the girl steal the boys’ shoes and return it in exchange for a fee.
The Phera ceremony involves four rituals- the Kanyadan, the Pheras, Sindoor Ritual and the Mangalsutra Rasam. In Kanyadan, the father of the bride gives his daughter’s hand to the groom. Certain mantras are chanted by the pandit. Then the Pheras take place where the boy and girl circle around the sacred fire. The boy then applies the Sindoor to the girl’s head and ties a necklace to the girl’s neck.
Doli or Vidaai –
It is departure of bride for the groom’s house. When they reach the groom’s house, his mother take a vessel containing water and try to drink it after rounded it from their heads but the groom will stop him. After a few rounds, she drinks the water. Newly weds are welcomed in the house and they played number of traditional games.
Next time you go to a Punjabi wedding, you know what all ceremonies the boy and the girl have followed before the actual wedding takes place. It seems difficult to sit through all the ceremonies but as Punjabis like everything lavish, their ceremonies will not stay far behind.
when a girl leaves her parents home and goes along with her husband is called Vidai or Doli in Punjabi
Hemant Khurana (Happy) 🙂 🙂 🙂