(Last Updated on : 25/11/2011)
The Banjara Tribe follow the monogamy system of marriage. For the marriage the boy's father approaches the father of the girl. Sometimes the Banjaras also follow Bigamy. Dowry practise is prevalent among the Banjaras. Levirate, Sororate and Widow re-marriage is also prevalent. The Banjaras practice tribe endogamy and clan and village exogamy. Marriage between mates should not take place if they happen to be relatives up to three generations from either the father's or mother's side as in such cases they are considered as brother and sisters. Cousin marriages are also strictly prohibited. .For the marriage, bride price is paid but the amount is very nominal. The amount varies between rupees 5 to 15 and also the dress of the bride.
For the wedding the height, looks, colour and beauty of the bride and the groom is sought after. Once the date of the marriage is fixed the news is communicated to the community members. The date of the marriage is fixed consulting the village priest. On the day of the marriage the groom after taking the purification bath wears new clothes. All the male kins accompany the groom to the bride's place where the marriage will take place. Earlier the groom used to reach the place in a palki (palmqueen) but now they usually ride bicycles, rickshaws or bullockcart. When the Barat party reach the village of the bride, they are heartily welcomed by the male kins of the groom. The members of the Barat party are gifted beads of leaves and flowers by the Sarat party. A suitable place is organised for the Barat party to rest. They are offered foods like Dalmot or other salty mixtures, lakatho or gaja sweets, nimki and hamdia or mahua liquor. Subsequently both the parties perform dance sequences. Meanwhile the bride is brought in the courtyard for marriage. A seat is decorated and placed in the middle of the courtyard for the purpose of marriage. All the relatives of the bride sing songs during the marriage ceremony. The groom puts vermillion on the forehead of the bride and the couple move seven times around a fire tank. This marks the end of the marriage ceremony. After the completion of the marriage ceremony all the members enjoy the marriage feast and then go off to sleep. The next day in the morning the ceremony of vidai of the bride takes place. Before leaving the Bharat party are offered breakfast also.
The groom along with the bride when reaches his village, all the relatives give them a warm welcome. The newly wed couple is taken to the family deity to seek blessings. The elder members of the family also bless the couple for a happy and long lasting marriage. All the kins and the community members of the bride are invited for a feast. After the feast is over the kins return to their village.
The bride after her marriage stays in the father in law's house for a week and then goes to stay in her father's house. After a year an effective marriage is held again. The groom along with his friends goes to receive the bride. They couple now establish their own household and live together.