Wedding Ceremony
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Wedding Traditions

Muslim customs

Among the Muslims, the mangni or engagement ceremony takes place before marriage. The exchange of rings takes place and the outfit for the bride is provided by the groom's family. Two days before the wedding, the 'manjha' ceremony takes place where the bride is anointed with turmeric paste, sandalwood and chameli oil provided by the groom's family. Only unmarried women apply this to the bride. Henna is also put on the bride's hand and feet. After this ceremony the bride is not allowed to leave her house before the wedding takes place. The bride's clothes on the wedding day are also provided by the groom's family. On the wedding day, a procession of friends and relatives follow the groom who rides on a horse or a car. The arrival of the groom is accompanied with beating of drums and playing of musical instruments. On the arrival, the groom and the bride's brother exchange a glass of sharbat. (Sweetened drink)
The men and women are seated in separate rooms or have a curtain to separate them. But this is not the case for all Muslim ceremonies. A compulsory amount of money is given by the groom's family to the bride's family known as 'meher' and the amount is decided by the elders of both the families. Before reading out a selected piece from the Koran, the priest will ask the bride if she is happy with the marriage and agrees her groom.
The groom is also asked the same. The marriage is then registered known as 'nikaahnama', first signed by the groom and then by two other witnesses. The groom is then taken to the women's section where he gives money and gifts to the sisters of the bride and takes the blessings of the elders. Then dinner is served separately to men and women.
After the first meal, the bride and the groom sit together and a long scarf is used to cover their heads as the priest reads out prayers. Then the holy Koran is kept between them and they are allowed to see each other through reflection by mirrors. The dried dates and sweet dishes are served to the guests. The groom spends a night separately at the bride's house with a younger brother and in the morning he is given clothes, gifts and money by the bride's parents. That afternoon the groom's relatives come to accompany the bridal couple to their home.

The farewell is given by the bride's father giving her hand to the groom asking him to protect her always.


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