Halad Chadawane And Halad Utarvane From The Pages Of A Maharashtrian Wedding

India is a beautiful country, the fact that it is home to so many different religions points out the fact that there are so many different types of festivals, celebrations, and rituals followed in different parts of our country. Even for weddings, there are innumerable types pf wedding rituals followed in our country which beautifully display the distinctness of each religion and its cultural values.

Marriage is one bond between tied between two people, a bond that signifies love and commitment, isn’t it? When two people tie knots with each other, it just does not tie the couple in an eternal bond but even their families who come together and accept each other’s customs and cultures. Today, I decided to pen down my thoughts on one of the most interesting wedding rituals – i.e. Haldi. I am sure you would be knowing about this in detail but this time I wanted to whiff on the Maharashtrian Special Haldi Ceremony!

Specifically, all Hindu’s follow this pre wedding ritual of Haldi Ceremony. The mixture of haldi, water and oil are applied to both the bride and groom on the morning of the wedding. Sometimes it is even applied a night before wedding, well that depends on culture they belong to. The haldi is believed to bless the couple before wedding and many Indian communities consider it as a shield that protects the newlyweds from any problems. There are different names of haldi ceremony like in Gujarati Culture it is called Pithi, Bengali – Gaye holud, Marwaries – Tel baan, Telegites – Pellikuthuru, Southern states – Arishinda kombu, Uttar kannada- Nandi and Maharashtrian – Halad Chadawane and utaravane

haldi ceremony
Photo of ‘haldi ceremony’ by swapnil gaikar under CC BY-ND 2.0

Halad Chadawane & Halad Utaravane – From my eyes

I was born and brought up in Mumbai the city of dream and grew up completely in Maharashtrian culture. Since childhood I have been surrounded with Marathi friends, hence I have a very close connection with the Maharashtrian culture. Born into a south-indian family, I share this very special soft corner for the Marathis and would proudly call myself a Maharashtrian from heart – Yes “Me Marathi”. I have attended many marriages of my Maharashtrian friends and I was always really amazed to watch very beautiful wedding rituals what they followed. Today I would like to share with you all one of my Marathi friend’s haldi function which I had attended long back. Among all other rituals I enjoyed the haldi function way too much.

Halad chadawane, that’s how the Maharashtrian’s call it. The memories of this ritual are precious and very emotional. Also, that day I came to know why this haldi ceremony is so important. The  Maharashtrian haldi ceremony is held before the wedding day, haldi paste which is applied with mango leaves on the bride skin, helps the bride skin to glow on her wedding day and as I mentioned earlier it works as a protection shield that avoids any buri nazar. Same goes for the groom’s family, they hold a similar function at their home. Sometimes grooms leftover turmeric paste is taken for the bride and the same is applied to her.

Family, relatives, and special friends all are invited to join this fun-filled wedding function. Elders bless the bride and groom. In a Maharashtrian wedding once the halad chadhawane ritual is performed the bride and groom cannot step out from their home. It is one of the Shastra that they must follow strictly.

For the bride, this ritual is a very emotional capture when the mother applies haldi to her daughter and father watches her with teary eyes  – this feeling cannot be expressed in words, all I can say is that this moment is very emotional, precious and unforgettable for every single daughter and her parents.

Surprisingly, while talking to my friends to dig more into this enthralling custom I came to know that Maharashtrians also follow the Halad Utaravane ritual. This was interesting, Halad Utaravane ritual is done on the next day of marriage. During this ritual, the bride and groom sit together and five married ladies (in Marathi called suvasinis) follow the same halad chadavane rituals in the reverse sequence.

Usually during halad chadawane the application of haldi to forehead, shoulders, and feet goes in reverse order. The same is again reversed in the hald utarvane. One suvasini holds a copper or silver water pot and pours little water while others are performing halad utaran. This ritual signifies that now the couple is free to go out and start their happy married life.

In The End…

I feel, in Indian marriages every single ritual has its distinct uniqueness and purity – In the end of which it brings in streams of endless happiness. I hope you all enjoyed reading about the Maharashtrian pre and post wedding ritual Halad Chadawane and Halad Utarvane.

Friends, If you like this article please do share and like… In Marathi : Article avadal asel tar nakki like kara ani share kara……. 🙂 

Featured Photo of ‘The Haldi/Kumkum ceremony’ by athreya_krishna under CC BY 2.0

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