Marriages are held all over the year in Bangladesh, but winter is most acceptable season. Because the season is very comfortable and rural communication is very easy and non-hazardous.
Muslim marriage, in its truest form, is a boy and a girl takes vow to live as husband and wife for rest of their lives. They have to take this vow in front of at least three knowledgeable persons. This is the most non-ceremonial part of marriage.
The marriage ceremony is the top most pompous and interesting among the entire social ceremonies in Bangladesh. It is one of main festival to poor, middle even upper class people. People of all classes spent their utmost economic ability for this purpose. In ancient time, bride did not have any choice to choose her husband. The parents of bride took all types of decision regarding bride. At present, the environment has been changed due to women education and personal choice of bride regarding marriage got importance.
It is the first stage of pompous Bengali marriage ceremony, when the Ring is given to bride by the guardian of bridegroom. Normally the father or mother of bridegroom or at the absence of parents, any senior relative of bridegroom gives the ring to bride. At this occasion, the date of marriage and the amounts of ‘Denmahor' are fixed. Bridegroom gives ‘Denmahor' to bride. It can be paid by gold or cash. The amount depends on the financial ability of the bridegroom. The half of this amount is paid at the time of marriage. The rest of the amount are to be paid in future by asset or cash. The total of ‘Denmohar' must be paid before the death of bridegroom.
‘Gaye Halud' is most interesting of the stages of marriage ceremony. It is arranged at the house of bride and bridegroom. The younger members of bridegroom go to the house of bride with different gift items, which is necessary for this festival, such as Sharee, Garland of flowers, Turmeric paste, Mehendi paste, sweet etc. The bride wears the sharee; flower's ornaments then the girls besmear termaric paste on the body of bride. They distribute sweets to all. On the same way, the boys & girls of the house come to the bridegroom house to enjoy the same festival there.
The evening of that day, “Mehedi” festival is stared at the house of bride & bridegroom separately. The girls draw the beautiful design on hands of the bride & another girls.
Biye = Nikah (Marriage)
Marriage is arranged at the house to bride. The relatives of bridegroom arrange a journey to bride house to attend that ceremony. This journey is called “Barjatra”. Before staring the journey, another festival ‘Doi Mangole' is arranged for bridegroom, at this occasion, curd is mixed with chira, Doi. Then it is given to bridegroom to eat. Guardians of bridegroom give sharee, ornaments & other cosmetics items to bride.
Religious leader, Maulana or a marriage Registrar performs the main event. He recites scriptures from Holy Qaran and asks Bridegroom if he is ready to take the bride as his wife. At the consent of the bridegroom the Marriage Registrar along with two witnesses, generally respectable relatives from both sides, goes to the Bride and giving full identity of the Bridegroom informs that the person wants to marry her and asks Bride's consent to it. The question is asked thrice and reply should be given thrice. The Registrar then confirms whether the witnesses heard the consent properly. After getting consent of the Bride the Registrar gives the Contract Form to the Bride for her signature and the team returns to the Bridegroom and takes his signature. This ends the formality of the marriage. Then every invited person enjoy the feast. Normally polow, Briani, Chickens roast, sweet dishes are offered.
Bridegroom then comes to bride's stage. Then they exchange their eye contract & change their garlands which is known as “Mala Badal”. This part is called “ Shah Nazar” This part is conduced by bride's sisters & sister-in-laws.
Bashar Sajja (A bed of flower)
Bashar sajja – A bed of flower or it might be termed as Honeymoon bed. After all the formalities of the marriage, Bridegroom and bride are sent together to an apart room. In that well decorated room bridegroom and bride meet intimately for the first time. Younger girls and boys decorate the room with natural flower, multicoloured papers and perfume.
Bou-bhat (wedding reception)
Bou Bhat ceremony is arranged at bridegroom's house to introduce bride with all the relatives of bridegroom. In this function, both the relatives of bridegroom and bride are invited. Friends and relatives also are invited.
All the functions turn into social gathering and turn into a funfair, merry making, singing and frolicking.