Indian weddings are an enormous spectacle. With an array of rituals both preceding and leading up to the big day, every couple and their families including the elderly leave no stone unturned to make the celebration a memorable one. The internet is full of wedding photos, videos ranging from elaborate to hilarious experiences which are there for everyone to see. However, one such undated video of a happy couple dancing during their ‘phera’ ceremony has divided the internet and garnered mixed reactions from netizens.
Among many Indian traditions and Hindu weddings, the ritual of taking pheras or circling around a sacred fire is an important feature. During this ritual, the bride and groom surrounded by family and friends walk around the sacred fire seven times, while a priest recites hymns and prayers.
The video was shared on the microblogging site by a user named Vedant Birla on Tuesday. Birla, tweeting in Hindi, criticised the couple’s dancing ‘phera ceremony’ and termed it as disrespectful.
In the video shared by Birla, the bride and groom were seen dancing during their phera ceremony as guests cheered them on. “Is this a wedding or the sacrifice of our traditional values?" Birla wrote in Hindi while posting the video clip. “Don’t forget that if you are worth anything in this world it is because of your culture and values," he added.
The video instantly went viral as it raked in more than 6.3 lakh views, along with 1,100 comments on Twitter. It has also sparked an intense debate on the microblogging site. Several Twitter users criticised the couple for dancing during the phera ritual.
Aligning with Birla’s opinion, one user wrote how the ‘elders of the family allowed’ it.
I don't know how elders of the family allowed this.If you don't care about rituals then why do it at all… Just have court marriage and big party
— ً (@col_hindsight) March 2, 2021
Another user criticising the dance wrote that ‘today’s wedding’ is meant for ‘photography’ and to share on social media platforms and there’s no respect for rituals and traditions.
Today's weddings are just for photography to share on facebook and Instagram. No respect for rituals and traditions.— Ashok Shetty (ಅಶೋಕ -#JaiShreeRam) (@ashokshetty1970) March 2, 2021
A third supported the bride and groom celebrating their big day with the dance and wrote its ‘their choice’, while sarcastically poking fun at others who opposed he added, ‘still living in the 18th century’.
Replying to Birla and another journalist, another seconded and supported the couple and wrote that he doesn’t ‘see what is so wrong in this’.
I like your journalism SwatiJi but I don’t see what is so wrong in this. They are having their wedding the way they want to. No one is forcing anyone to watch the video.— Uphaar Goyal (@UphaarG) March 2, 2021
What do you think of such a marriage celebration?