iconimg Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Shara Ashraf, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, December 15, 2012
No one beats Delhiites when it comes to showing off at weddings. But this has to be a new low. In a bizarre trend, some weddings in the city have what party planners call an ‘ice man’ —  a person dressed in traditional silk dhoti and ornaments, standing with folded hands on an ice slab,  welcoming the baraatis.

What’s more, while the man shivers away standing straight on ice for 4-5 hours, guests are encouraged to throw currency notes at him. This is just the latest addition to the already popular trends of ‘human bar tables’, with young girls dressed in skimpy clothes, wearing skirts that double as tables, with guests enjoying drinks placed on the skirt, and that of having ‘human fountains’ where a girl pretends to be a statue at the entrance for hours, with a water fountain attached to her headgear.

We called wedding planners in the city, pretending to be hosts for a wedding, and realised how readily these inhuman services are accessible. “The ice man will cost R50,000. He’ll stand on ice ‘furniture’ as long as guests keep coming,” promised a wedding planner in Vasant Kunj.  “The fountain girls are from Thailand or Russia. We charge R1 lakh for each girl,” said another from Hari Nagar. “Live tables is a big attraction. Indian girls cost R60,000 while foreigners come for a lakh,” shares a wedding planner from Sarai Julena.

(Names withheld to protect identity)

Do guests like it?

I was horrified to see this at a wedding. It’s so regressive to have themes that cause pain to someone.-Dolly Gupta, stylist.

Such concepts cause repulsion. A lot of my clients demand them just to cause a stir.- Amarjyot Singh, wedding planner.

It’s very painful to stand still for hours. We are asked to wear provocative clothes and men keep touching us at the wrong places.-Rubina, 28, live table model. 

I danced on ice for six hours at a wedding in Chattarpur, and got only Rs. 1,500.-Johnny, 22, dancer.