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Bihar groom ditches motorcade to ride a palanquin to his wedding

A bridegroom in rural Bihar insists on palanquin ride to cover 500 metres to reach bride’s house, inaccessible by light motor vehicles.

india Updated: May 02, 2017 11:51 IST
Ruchir Kumar
Bridegroom Devanand Kumar seated in a palanquin at a village in Bihar’s Aurangabad.
Bridegroom Devanand Kumar seated in a palanquin at a village in Bihar’s Aurangabad. (Photo: Subodh Kumar)

Patna A bridegroom did the last stretch of the baraat (the wedding procession) in a palanquin, a mode of transport traditionally used to carry royal brides to their husband’s homes.

The unusual switch-up happened on Saturday when the groom and his entourage couldn’t travel further on the narrow road leading to the bride’s village in the eight vehicles they were in.

Devanand Kumar was then carried in a palanquin with four bearers, accompanied by the sehbala (best man), while the remaining members of the wedding party escorted them on foot.

Kumar had travelled 65 kms from his village Basdiha in Deo block to the bride Vibha Kumari’s village in Birhara, tucked in Aurangabad district, 140 kms south-west of Patna.

He was carried over the last 500m.

Surendra Kumar, sarpanch (head) of Purhara panchayat, said: “The bridegroom’s vehicle could not access the village because of the narrow, kutcha (unmetalled) road. As a result, the vehicles were parked in a field and a palanquin arranged for the bridegroom.”

Palanquins were used when the purdah system existed, when women were concealed from men, usually before marriage. However, palanquins are still used occasionally in rural India.

UNUSUAL SWITCH-UP

BLURB

The groom and his entourage couldn’t travel further on the narrow road leading to bride’s village in vehicles. Groom was then carried in a palanquin accompanied by sehbala (best man)