Why India Could Never Have a Royal Wedding

And with that, they were married. Yes, the Royal Wedding of the century officially ended. Sigh. If you did manage to take a peek, you probably couldn't help but shed a tear at the regality and royalty that the wedding exhibited. Both Prince William (now Duke of Cambridge) and his new bride, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, looked, behaved and put on quite a majestic show. He was all smiles when he saw his blushing bride, calling her “beautiful” as she lifted her veil – very Bollywood, if I may say so, ghoonghat utka ke and all that jazz. As for her, wow, she really looked like a princess. But what worked the most for me was their youthfulness. They are not your traditional prince and commoner-turned-princess. Hardly. They dated eight years, co-habitated and then, finally, after she had been exposed to what could be her life, amidst the media and paparazzi, the Prince decided she was indeed, the one. We wanted a complete British imperial noble display, and we got it penny for penny. What was lacking? Lady Diana. Her presence was sorely missed. She would have been so proud to see her eldest son take a wife. You can be sure amidst all the "properness", Lady Di would have hugged her son and new daughter-in-law, a sight we, the audiences didn’t see once the nuptials were over. But somehow, you could feel her spirit was all around; abundant blessings for her son. And the Sun God too decided to shower his blessings on the couple – it actually made an appearance in April!

All this talk about shaadi made me wonder if we, in India, could pull off such a wedding? Amongst all the pomp and glory, there were a number of factors that really made the William-Kate perfect. Could India do the same? Here’s what they’d need to face.

The Big Ben Factor

I don’t care what anyone says about the British and their stern ways but they are one hell of an organized society. Every minute detail was taken care of at the wedding; especially the program and timing. The ceremony was scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. sharp. And it did. The Princes arrived followed by Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla who were scheduled to leave at 10:38 a.m. Guess what? Their cars rolled out of their driveway at precisely that time. Not even a millisecond late.

This would not work at all in India. It would literally be impossible for any couple (royal or celebrity) to arrive at their mandap promptly. No chance. If it isn’t the security or the traffic, it’s just not in our bleedin’ blood! You cannot expect the bride to be on time – even if she is ready on time, she’ll find a reason to come late. And while we may look at it as being fashionably late, you have to admit that a delay of more than 10 minutes is hardly chic; it’s tacky and impolite. And while we do it, the British frown upon latecomers. Tut-tut.

The Organization

The entire ceremony, the schedule, the service; all of it was perfect. There was no error; not a single mistake. Even the bride, who portrayed herself with complete dignity and poise, failed to falter at any point. From the minute the celebration began to the end, and even the surprise convertible ride the couple indulged in, it was all pomp and glory with no blunders.

Unfortunately in India, that really isn’t possible. There would be bloopers, faux pas’ and major lapses. We can barely get through a decent ceremony without some disorganization; a wedding of this magnitude would be terribly hard to organize, logistic-wise at least.

The Guests

There were 1,900 guests at Westminster Abbey. Most of them included some of the crème de la crème and most elite from British society, major politicians and international country officials. But the biggies were missing in action – sorry Madonna and Obama; you didn’t quite make the cut. Reason? The palace and local police were having enough of a security nightmare as they ensured the Royal Family was safe, the crowds weren’t going crazy and ensuring that mayhem didn’t break loose. Can you imagine if they had to deal with Obama attending the shabbang? Yeah, carnage! So instead, they decided, sorry Yankee President, you can stay right where you are. Not only that, but the guests weren’t given any formal seating. They were told to a group after which, it was up to them to choose their seats. None of this diplomatic seating plan jhanjat.

In India, this would be the biggest issue. Politicians and celebs always take center stage at all weddings. This means if any conflict are currently brewing issues in the political or starry world, it would be a nightmare trying to organize seating. After all, can’t have Shah Rukh Khan sitting by Salman Khan. And you can’t not invite them. That would be wrong, no? The media always follows where the stars are after all and so, they need to attend. Oh the spectacle!

The Outfits

What was the biggest kept secret of the William-Kate wedding? Her dress. We had no clue who the designer was, what the style was and how she was going to wear it. And when she finally revealed her stunning Sarah Burton lace number, we were gob smacked – at least I was. Every aspect of her presentation was kept a secret including her tiara.

What would be the biggest problem for any Indian royal (or celeb) bride? They could never keep the dish on their trousseau a secret. First of all, the designer wouldn’t be able to contain their excitement and if they magically did manage to, someone from their camp would reveal the details which would ultimately completely ruin the mystery of it all. In India, nothing can be kept a classified. True fact.

The Drama

There was zero nonsense leading up to the Royal Wedding. No ex-girlfriends or ex-boyfriends coming out with unknown details, no friends wanting attention, no secret lovers or illegitimate children for the bride or groom. It was simple and noble.

Cut to India. Remember when Abhishek Bachchan was about to tie the knot with Aishwarya Rai and how some random “commoner” (that’s what the British called people who are not blue blooded, i.e. from a royal background) came out to claim that she was Bachchan’s lover? Yes, that is the kind of hoopla we get in India. Everyone wants to get in on the hype. And the extent to which they are willing to stoop is rather sad.

Footnote: Apaprently, Abhi-Ash are the closest it comes to royalty in India - oh dear!

On the flip side, Check out Varun Gandhi's small Benares shinding; small, sweet and simple.
Listen I’m all about the Band’s, the Baaja’s and the Baaraat’s, and I love it Desi style too. The 3 to 4 days of nonstop dancing, banquets of food and the functions make it worthwhile. But there was something magical about watching William and Catherine walk down the aisle, ride their 1902 carriage and eventually kiss on the balcony. Yes, yes, it was regal (how many more times will I use that word?) but it also, quite simply put, lovely. Sadly, we don’t have too much royalty left in India, and the few royal families that are around, choose to have rather quiet intimate weddings. So we’ll have to make do with watching celebrities, politicians (kith and kin) and cricketers who are the equivalent to royalty in our country, do their thing when they jump into matrimony. But that’s how we like our shaadis; fun and frantic, crazy and chaotic. #ithappensonlyinIndia

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

First it was just Sindhis, now it's the entire Indian community. Yet another patronizing post by you. Why am I not surprised in the least?

What exactly is your problem, may I ask? You openly claim and show your love for India and Indians when it comes to films, politics and cricket and what not but somehow, you never seem to leave out an opportunity to unnecessarily bash them everytime you get the chance. And why the comparison? Either you're just insanely jealous you're not Kate (like most girls around the world) or you just don't have anything better to write about. Personally, I think it's the latter. If Indians didn't have all THEIR drama, YOU clearly wouldn't have anything to write about in the first place.

P.S. I'm writing an anonymous post because I don't want my name coming up in professional aspects. (Just putting that out there before you decide to go all out and write another patronizing post about how anonymous responses are not worth paying attention to.)


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