Jaipur, Apr 06, 2020: Wedding amid an ongoing 21-day nationwide lockdown to contain the spread of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak cannot be an ostentatious affair.
And, the couple, Monika and Ajay Choudhary, realised the gravity of the situation, where social distancing is the new normal, but was still keen to tie the knot on the scheduled date of April 5 (Sunday) after the Jaipur district administration gave them permission late on Saturday evening, Hindustan Times reported.
“In January, the date of our marriage date was fixed for April 5. We’re unsure whether we could get married on Sunday as the authorities gave us permission late on Saturday evening. They also put a pre-condition that a total of eight members, including four each from the bride and the bridegroom’s family, can only attend the wedding ceremony. Even, the priest was arranged only on Sunday afternoon,” said Ajay, who works at an automobile company in Jaipur.
He said his boss came for a short while but left before the ceremony begun. However, none of his family members could attend his marriage, as his parents and other loved ones are staying at his native Narhar village in Jhunjhunu district amid the lockdown. They got a virtual feel of the event, thanks to video call. “I had put up a status message about my wedding on my WhatsApp number and requested friends and loved ones to download the Zoom app. About 30 of my friends watched the ceremony digitally,” he said.
However, Monika’s family members, including her parents and siblings, were by her side when she got married.
Monika (28) works as a nurse and is posted at a government dispensary in Ramganj, a neighbourhood in Jaipur that has been sealed because a bulk of the Covid-19 positive cases have been reported from there. However, she continued to work in the hotspot until Saturday. “I took all precautions because I was working in the middle of the city’s Covid-19 epicentre. I’ve taken leave until April 10 because of my wedding,” she said.
The wedding took place at Monika’s house in Vidhyadhar Nagar, where she lives with her sister. Her parents and brother’s family came from Shastri Nagar.
The guests maintained social distancing and wore masks during the wedding ceremony.
Monika said sangeet was the only ritual that she missed during the ceremony. “We plan to make it up during the reception, whenever it is held,” she said.
Ajay is disappointed that his parents couldn’t attend the function even though he doesn’t like big fat weddings. “Besides, I didn’t get any time to buy a new dress for the occasion and wore my old kurta pyjama. Monika, however, was dressed for the occasion,” he added.
“Now, we’re planning to visit Jhunjhunu to seek Ajay’s parents’ blessings, as and when the lockdown is lifted,” Monika said.