This seems like a plotline straight out of Bollywood.
A wedding can bring on a lot of emotions for the whole family, not just the bride and groom, but this particular wedding sounds like a rollercoaster for everybody involved. In the middle of one Hindu ceremony in Uttar Pradesh, India last week, the bride suddenly passed away — and the groom ended up marrying her sister instead.
And we don’t mean this in a, “they came together in mutual grief,” Hunter Biden dating his brother’s widow type of way. The groom didn’t have a mourning period before marrying the sister. He married her during the same wedding — while the original bride’s recently deceased body was in the other room!
Here’s the full story: the bride, identified by the name Surabhi, was set to marry Manoj Kumar. But during the jaimala (when the bride and groom exchange garlands), Surabhi collapsed. A doctor called to inspect her declared her dead on the scene after she seemingly suffered a massive cardiac arrest, News 18 reported. So sad!!
Surabhi’s brother Saurabh told news agency IANS (via News 18):
“We did not know what to do in the situation. Both the families sat together and someone suggested that my younger sister Nisha should be married to the groom. The families discussed the matter and both agreed.”
To the Times of India, he added:
“It was a bizarre situation as the wedding of my younger sister took place while the dead body of my other sister was laying in another room.”
He explained that once the ceremony was finished and the baraat (the wedding procession) had left, the family then held final rites for Surabhi.
Her uncle, Ajab Singh, shared:
“It was a tough call for our family. One daughter lay dead in one room and the wedding of another daughter was being solemnized in the other room. We have never witnessed such mixed emotions. The grief over her death and the happiness of the wedding has yet to sink in.”
Radha Patel, founder of South Asian matchmaking site Single to Shaadi, speculated that the families decided to go forward with the wedding because “they wanted to keep it in the family.” She told USA Today:
“So much vetting goes into matching families in marriages and it is natural for the families to want to stay together.”
What an unthinkable situation. There are obviously cultural differences at play here, but we can’t imagine what it must have felt like going forward with the ceremony when the bride’s body wasn’t even cold yet. Our hearts go out to the family in such a bewildering time.
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