Friday, January 19, 2018

Bollywood comes to Chaguanas for ‘Bhandari Festival’


RIDING HIGH: Chris Mohammed, (the Sarbala who accompanies the groom to the traditional Hindu wedding) makes his way through Price Plaza, Chaguanas, towards the Divali Nagar site to be part of the re-enactment of the Hindu wedding as part of the Heritage Radio “Bhandari Festival” —a post-Indian Arrival Day celebration on Friday evening. —Photo: Carolyn Kissoon

Mark Fraser

Many described it as a scene from a Bollywood movie, as a groom and his Sarbala (a young boy who accompanies the groom in a Hindu wedding) rode on brightly decorated horses to a wedding ceremony at the Divali Nagar site, Endeavour, Chaguanas on Friday evening.

The re-enactment of a night wedding was part of Heritage Radio 101.7FM’s “Bhandari Festival”—a post-Indian Arrival Day celebration.

The day began with a bicycle and motorcycle parade through the streets of Chaguanas and there was a cookout on chula (earthen stoves) at the venue.

The street parade, as in a traditional Hindu wedding, began at Avidesh Samaroo Park, Endeavour Chaguanas at 5.30 p.m.  The groom, Rishi Sinanan, and seven-year-old Chris Mohammed, mounted two horses and galloped along the roadway, through Price Plaza, and down Narsaloo Ramaya Road, where the bride, Crystal Kissoon-Sinanan, was awaiting them. 

Kissoon-Sinanan is an announcer at Heritage Radio. The procession was led by a music truck and tassa drumming.

Throughout the procession people came out of their homes and businesses to get a glimpse of the decorated white horses and the two riders dressed in traditional Indian garb.

The re-enactment of the wedding was held under a mandap (alter) officiated by Pundit Chrisendath Ramdhanie Sharma, who is also a Heritage Radio announcer.

Members of the Shiv Shakti Dance Company performed traditional wedding dances during the wedding.

Entertainment was also provided by the T&TEC Gayatones with Andy Singh, Nadia Nadoo and Nishard Sultan.