Thursday, January 18, 2018
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marriage season back

The late arrival of `baraats’ is a nuisance that is being tolerated by society even though everyone is heard criticizing it. Often on the invitation card the time for the reception of the baraat is printed 7p.m. Those who believe in punctuality reach the bride’s venue at 7p.m. But the baraat does not come at 7p.m.,nor at 8p.m., nor at 9pm., nor at 10 p.m  but at 10.30 p.m.

Is this fair ? How can the hosts justify the delay ? True, the bride’s people are helpless. But in that case shift the scene to the bride-groom’s venue. The time of the departure of baraat is given as 6.30p.m. Guests arrive at 6.30p.m. But on one pretext or the other delay takes place. The assembled baraatis are pacified with cold drinks or coffee or/and snacks. The band-walas come on time too,. They start displaying their skill and talent by spreading noise pollution at its peak. One can scarcely recognize the tune, leave alone appreciating it.  Those who have to wait for the baraat to start have to undergo hell of an experience. But since they have come from far off they have no choice but to stay on and undergo the torture. And if suddenly there is power cut it  makes torture intolerable. The band  does not stop. It takes time for the generator to be switched on.  The eleventh-hour arrangements at the bride-groom’s place delay the departure time further. And then there are the youngsters in the party who have to perform `bhangra’ all the way. They have to be energized in this cold weather. For them rum or whiskey bottles are uncorked in a very liberal manner. Thus recharging themselves with artificial energy, these young men become the leaders of the procession when the party finally starts round 9p.m. On the way these youngsters with rum inside to keep them warm indulge freely in the liberty of presenting roadside `bhangras’. The bandsmen get special kick out of playing the latest jazzy numbers. The poor bride-groom is seated inside his car, almost imprisoned. It is another matter that the bridegroom of modern times does not feel caged like his counterpart a generation ago because he has the mobile with him to talk to his friends and relatives though how he is able to converse on phone with loudspeakers blaring at full speed is any body’s guess. The `baraat’ moves with fits and starts at a snail’s pace, blocking traffic on the way; and if another baraat is coming from the opposite direction then even the snail starts moving upwards and backward to make way for the party from the other side.

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