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Customs - Birth
Marriage - Gauna

 
Marriage

Of the siMarriage xteen Samskaras in the life of a Rajasthani, marriage is the most sacred and the most important. It is considered a religious and social obligation on every able bodied person to get married. 

The normal type of marriage is one arranged by parents, usually within the same caste. Marriages are arranged through the good offices of a Bhat, Charan or Purohit. The family priest compares the horoscopes of the boy and the girl and if they tally, the marriage is settled. There is no fixed age for marriage, but normally girls are married at the age of eighteen and boys at twenty-one in cites and towns. In rural areas, child marriages although banned by law are still very common, specially in tribal areas. Among the Sahrias, marriage is settled when the child is still in the womb of the mother.

Gauna

If a girl is married before she attains puberty, she stays with her family. After she attains puberty, the bridegroom is invited to take her away. The bridegroom comes with a party of friends and relatives. Presents are given to him, and the women of the family and locality assemble at the bride's residence to greet him and his party and sing songs. Sweets are distributed. This custom is very common in rural areas where child marriages are still very popular. In urban areas, Gauna is rare.

Inter-Caste Marriage

 
Inter-caste marriages are not very common in Rajasthan, but they are becoming increasingly popular and acceptable. Among the educated and enlightened who want to break caste barriers, such marriages are no longer very rare. On the other hand, they are welcome.

Inter Religious Marriages

Inter-religious marriages, during medieval times, were a result of political pressure by the Mughals. They were never approved by  the people. The abhorred the very idea of the Hindu-Muslim marriages. Inter-religious marriages are almost unheard of in Rajasthan in modern times with  a few exceptions. 

Polygamy

Polygamy is another legacy of Rajasthan. Although banned by law, polygamy is fairly common among the Rajputs, the Bhils, Meenas and other tribal communities. They still consider it  as a status symbol. The Jagirdars and Rajputs have traditionally been polygamous.


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