Monday, September 21, 2020

The People

Child  Marriage 

Child Marriage, to some extent, is still prevalent among the Brahmanas and Kayasthas, more particularly in the villages. Brahmanas perform the three ceremonious connected with a girls marriage at three stages: before the attainment of puberty, after puberty and when she attains motherhood. They do not allow widow-remarriage.

In some Assamese villages, there is a custom in which a man called a Dhoka or Chapaniya goes to live with a widow as her husband. But he is very much looked down upon. On the other hand, a widower some times brings into his house a widow as his wife, who is known as a Batalu. On the night the widower comes to the widow's house, she places a bowl of fried cock-meat and a bowl of rice beer on the threshold of her bedroom and seats herself outside with a tiny lamp and a stick. The man goes round and round the house seven times mewing like a cat. After each round he approaches the door only to the driven off by the woman. After the seventh round she asks if it is her children's father (her dead husband) and he replies, yes. Then only can he enter the house, eat and drink, and after certain formalities become the master of the house. The Dhoka leaves his original home for good, discarding all rights to property. The Bodos generally provide a good safeguard to their widow's .