The Rohingya wedding ceremony is held by throwing a dinner party as far as possible. In early days, the wedding program of Rohingya would be held by holding stage show consisting of singing religious songs such as “Kavali” after the sunset. The members of the groom would come to the village/area of the bride to sing, dance by playing traditional gong, which is a musical instrument.
Womenfolk would sing “Howlla” using mouth organ. But now a days, with the change of time and restriction that follows when Military regime came to power, the beauty of traditional Rohingya wedding ceremony started to wane. In almost all Rohingya weddings “Howlla” singing and folk dancing by females are common.
In pre-military regime, at least 2/3 person from each family would have joined the program but now due to travel restriction only a handful person would go to the bride’s house to attend the wedding.
As most Rohingyas are Muslims, the cook makes sure the dishes which are served must be “Halal” foods. No alcohol is served but now a days, Rohingyas have to invite the local officials and alcohol beverage must be served to them as a gesture. Or else, the wedded couple or the relatives would be bound to receive the wrath from the authorities.
Wedding guests usually wear dazzling clothes just like the Bride and Groom. The ladies usually arrive wearing expensive clothes along gold jewelries they own. Everyone tries to look their best on a wedding ceremony.
After the grand feast, the “Nikah” which is a marriage contract is signed by both Bride and Groom under the presence of Muslim clergy known as Ukil along with witnesses and other dignitaries.
After the Nikah, the bride’s father hands over his daughter in the hands of the Groom and asks him to take care of her daughter. The atmosphere gets emotional before the bride leave her house. A “Phalki” was used in earlier days to carry the bride to her in-law’s house. But now a days, vehicles like car or SUV are being used where the bride and the groom sits together and leaves for their new journey.
After seven days of the wedding, about 15 to 30 men and women from bride’s side will visit the bridegroom’s house and will bring back the bride. After seven days the bridegroom’s family members and relatives reciprocate to bring back the new bride.