Bangladesh

Family celebrates couple with ceremonial wedding on their 66th anniversary

An elderly couple marked their 66th marriage anniversary with a ceremonial wedding function in a remote village of Biral upazila of Dinajpur.

The couple -- Bodyanath Debsharma (92) and his wife Ponchabala Debsharma (80) -- of south Meragaon village of the upazila renewed their marriage on Sunday with much flamboyance.

The only daughter of the couple, their grandchildren and great-grandchildren, their relatives, and villagers organised the ceremony, which kicked off on Saturday night.

The boubhat (reception) took place last night.

Two priests, Mohadeb Banarjee and Mohadeb Bhattychariya, jointly administered the couple's marriage renewal at their residence on Sunday night according to Hindu customs after the couple arrived at the venue riding a private car.

Later, the couple exchanged two flower garlands as per tradition.

Mahadev Banarjee, one of the priests, told The Daily Star that the couple has been married and sharing their lives for 66 years, which is rare in any society. According to Hindu rituals, such a ceremony is organised if the 3rd generation arrives and this couple has seen the fifth generation, he said.

There are 50 grand and great-grandchildren of the couple.

The couple were married in 1955, remembered Bodyanath Debsharma, who was a member of the local union parishad and later became the village doctor.

"Palki (palanquin) was the only way to take a newly-wed couple home, but we took a ride on a car today," said Ponchabala.

Relatives and villagers were invited via two printed invitation cards. A large arch gate was erected at the entrance of the house, which was illuminated.

Talking to The Daily Star, the daughter of the couple, Jhilkobala Sarkar, said, "All of the 5 generations are alive."

The wedding turned into a festival for all villagers. Sabul Chandra Sarkar, chairman of Dharmapuri union under Biral upazila, said such a ceremony was held at the union for the first time.

Bibhutivushan Sarkar, a marriage registrar in the upazila, who was also invited at the wedding party, said such a wedding was exceptional.

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