Last week, I attended the marriage of one of my dearest school friend, Alok. It feels really good to see your friends grow older and ready to take responsibility. And seeing your dear ones to step in a happy-to-go-life is always a nice experience. Alok and Shweta really make a happy couple and I wish all the happiness for them forever. Among his friends, Deepak and I stayed overnight and shared some light-funny-serious moments. Even Nitin was there but he left at 2:30 am as he needed to drop someone to station. Another good thing about friend’s marriages is that you can meet most of your old friends, whom you meet once in a while (especially when you work in a different city), at one place. And these are almost the only occasions to cherish old memories.

So, all was going well in the marriage and they were almost ready to take bride at groom’s place (Vidaai ceremony), when I and Deepak shocked to see one of the ceremonies. Though I’m not able to recall the name of that but it went something like this – just before the vidaai, groom’s father was banged with HALDI filled hands from bride’s side ladies. Then he received a make-up from those all over his face. His face was looking like dipped in a pool of red lipstick. And this wasn’t enough so he was wrapped in a yellow saari and then a DHOL was given in his hands. He was supposed to beat that DHOL and to dance on its tune. He did the same with a smile on his face. But, what we were thinking was if it was a genuine smile in the joy if his son’s marriage or he was not left with any other option but to wear a smile.

This ceremony was supposed to cut distances between groom’s father and bride’s mother and what a shameful way it was to narrow the gap. This event gave me some food for thought and I was forced to think if we are supposed to continue with the ages old rituals on the cost of self-respect or we should do only what is acceptable to the society.

PS: Another ceremony, which Deepak explained me, is GHOORA-POOJAN, in which people are supposed to worship the junk (Specifically KOODA).