*Drum rolls* as we enter the land of Dhols and Lassis.
Punjabi weddings have always been the affair of lavish food, dance, colors and music beats. Same are the Punjabis who are fun-loving yet the people who believe in celebrating their emotions with utter fondness. I don’t think there is anyone who is not fond of Punjabi weddings, okay maybe some people do exist that can be counted on my fingers. Yet, I believe there are a hell lot of special, loud and stunning traditions that make a Punjabi wedding totally ‘Dhamakedar.’
From elaborate lehengas to the noisy baratis, the ‘dance till you drop’ sangeet affair to an extremely friendly and warmly-welcoming host, a Punjabi wedding is akin to a true roller-coaster ride. So, let’s take a look at various wedding rituals that make the Punjabi weddings, the best.
1. Rokka or Pre-engagement
This is the initial ritual in a Punjabi wedding where the bride’s family visits the groom’s place to offer the groom their blessings along with various gifts for the family. This custom is known as the Rokka. The bride is generally not present at this ceremony.
2. Engagement and Chunni Chadana
A group of ladies arrives at the bride’s house on the morning of the engagement. The special part of this ceremony is an intricately embellished headscarf or Chunni. The Chunni is placed on the bride’s head and her face is covered with it like a veil. This ceremony is known as Chunni Chadana.
3. Ladies Sangeet and Mehndi
Ladies sangeet is a musical event generally arranged by the bride’s family. Together, the ladies make merry by singing folk wedding songs, teasing the bride, and dancing around. Thereafter a mehndi ceremony takes place where both bride’s and groom’s hands are decorated with henna at their respective places.
After completion of the Haldi ceremony, the dried haldi paste is scrubbed off from the bride’s face and body. She is then taken to a nearby temple where she is made to put pitchers full of holy water on her. This ritual is known as Gharoli. The same ritual is also performed on the groom’s side.
5. Chooda ceremony
Chooda refers to a set of red and ivory bangles generally in a set of multiples of four. The maternal uncle or mama sits during which the chooda is purified in a liquid mixture containing milk and rose petals. The head and face of the bride is covered during the ceremony as she is not supposed to see the chooda until the moment of her wedding.
6. Gana Bandhna
On the morning of the wedding day, at their respective houses, the bride and the groom attend a puja in which the priest ties a sacred thread or mouli to their right wrists. This is basically Gana Bandhna.
7. Anand Karaj
Basically called the ‘Phere’ which takes place in the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib. Relative from both the sides pay their respect to the Guru Granth Sahib (holy book) and take a seat in the Darbar Sahib and the marriage progresses.
And all these things combined make Punjabi Weddings an affair to remember.