The word arranged marriage is an alien concept in the Western world but here in our part of the world it is an accepted thing. A few decades ago when you talked marriage in an average Indian house it meant parents meet the groom and the bride and decide the fate of the relationship. Sometimes the bride and groom met each other during the wedding ceremonies only. Actually it is a very different concept these days. Lots of parents give their children a chance to find a suitable bride or groom for themselves but the opinion of parents is important. They have coined a new word ‘love arranged marriage’ for this sort of marriage.
This topic came to my mind after talking to my friend who has a young daughter who is well settled and ready to get married. I liked the way they went about the whole process of finding a groom for their daughter. They advertised in the newspaper and as expected had lots of responses. They sorted them out and responded to the chosen ones. Their photographs and details were sent through E-mails. The girl and the boy had an equal say in eliminating the bio-datas. Finally the girl and the guy met for breakfast and met the parents as well. They are both free to talk to each other and meet each other again and decide if they suit each other’s expectations. The parents have done their due diligence and they know the boys and girls antecedents. I don’t find anything regressive in this as long as the boy and girl are not forced to do anything against their wishes. Not that I am against love marriages as long as they are done sensibly and long term interests are taken into account. Marriage is a life long commitment and not a joke. In our part of the world when people marry it is the union of two families and not just two people. We are intrusive and inquisitive people and everybody is interested in everybody else’s business. You can’t imagine the extent of family involvement in each and every ritual.
In so many recent surveys conducted by different newspapers more and more young people have opted for arranged marriages. One reason could be they are too busy to find a partner for themselves or it is safer to trust the parents choice because family support is a big help during difficult times even in the marital relationship. I have seen so many troubled relationships being sorted out by family support. It certain cases it may backfire but more often than not it helps. Arranged or love marriage whatever is done with an open mind and maturity makes sense.