Every wedding in India is different, and it is so because Indian cultures are rich and diverse. Be it a Telugu, Punjabi, or Bengali, every wedding you attend is different. But,when it comes to bong-style weddings, certain customs and traditions make them distinct.
So if you are going to get married soon or are invited to your BFF's Bengali marriage, here's your detailed guide to all the rituals that take place in Bengali matchmaking.
Pre wedding Rituals For Bengali Matrimonial
Adan Pradan: This ritual in Bengali matchmaking takes place once the couple accepts each other as life partners. Their families then get together and call the holy priest for further proceedings. The priests analyze the horoscopes and then suggest some wedding dates. And once the dates get confirmed, gifts and sweet treats are exchanged between the families.
Ashirbaad & Aiburo Bhaat: Once the dates get fixed, the Ashirbaad rituals take place where the families of the bride and groom bless the couple for a happy married life. The bride's family goes to the groom's house, and vice versa to shower the blessings. Rice is spilled over the couple for good luck. Post this, as the wedding days in Bengali matchmaking approach, Aiburoo Bhaat, another vital ritual for the bride in Bengali matrimony, takes place at her house. The bride is fed with rice, fish, and varied veggies, as this meal is considered as the send-off meal at her maternal home. Close relatives and friends gather at the bride's place and sing and dance their hearts out.
Gae Holud Tattva: In this Bengali matchmaking ritual, the groom's family visits the bride's house and gifts her tonnes of things. From fish to sarees and beauty products, the bride is pampered by her in-laws before the wedding.
Holud Kota and Snan: This custom in the Bengali matrimony is similar to the Haldi ceremony, and takes place across all Hindu weddings. Here, turmeric paste mixed with oil is applied to the groom by his mother and other relatives. Once done, the remaining Haldi is placed in a silver bowl and sent to the bride's house for the ritual.
Sankha Pola: This ritual takes place right before the wedding. And here, seven Bengal married women make the beautiful bride wear white and red bangles. The white ones are called Sankha, and the red ones are Pola.
Wedding Rituals Of Bengali Matrimony
Bor Jatri:. After seeking his mother's blessing, the groom proceeds to the bride's house in a decorated car. Close friends and family members accompany the groom, and they are called Bor Jatri. And once they arrive, they are welcomed by the team bride with an aarti.
Potto Bostro: Once the groom enters the venue, he is taken to the Chadnatolla (mandap). There, the bride's uncle gives him a new set of clothes that need to be worn by him during Bengali wedding rituals. The clothes given to the groom are known as Potto Bostro.
Shubho Drishti & Saat Paak: This beautiful wedding ceremony can only be seen in Bengali matchmaking. While entering the mandap, the bride isn't allowed to see the groom directly, so her eyes are covered with betel leaves. Her brothers carry her on a small stool to the mandap and walk around the groom seven times. After these rounds, also known as Saat Paak, the bride and groom see each other, known as Shubho Drishti.
Mala Badal: Again, this Bengali ritual is similar to other customs. Here the bride and groom exchange garlands for some fun. The fun element here is that their relatives carry them, which makes it difficult for them to exchange garlands.
Sampradan: Once the garland exchange is done, the couple then sits in the mandap, and the bride's uncle, who gave the groom potto bostro, ties the groom and bride's hand with a thread while the priest chants the holy mantras.
Saptapadi: In this Bengali matrimonial ritual, the priest chants Yantras, and once that's done, he ties a knot between the bride’s saree and groom’s shawl. Post that, the bride and groom take seven rounds around the fire while saying the vows, known as Saptapadi.
Anjali: After the pheras, the bride and the groom offer the puffed rice to the holy fire. After the offering, the groom fills the bride's forehead partition with sindoor and covers her head with Ghomta (new cloth). This ritual in Bengali matrimony marks the end of their ceremony.
Post-wedding rituals in Bengali matchmaking
Bidaai: This is an emotional event, where the bride bids goodbye to her family members and throws a fistful of rice without turning. While doing so, the bride prays for the prosperity of her maternal home.
Bou Baran: When the bride enters her new house, she steps on a plate that contains red lac dye and milk. She then steps on it and enters the house by leaving her footprints on white cloth.
Kaal Raatri: It is the first night of the bride in her new house. And as per the rituals in Bengali matrimony, the bride cannot sleep with the groom on the first night. They have to sleep in different rooms.
Bhau Bhaat: The first morning of the bride in her new house is celebrated by pampering her. Here, the groom gives the bride a new saree and other things while promising her that he will take care of her till death makes them apart. After this, the bride makes a meal for the family, and this first meal is known as Bau Bhaat.
Phool Shojja: Lastly, after a day of a gap, the bride and the groom celebrate their first night as husband and wife. And here, the room is decorated with flowers, and the bride gets ready with a new saree and floral jewelry.
Such authentic, simple and fun rituals make Bengali Matrimony interesting. Have you attended a bengali wedding yet? Do let us know about your experience.