Matrimonial Advertisements.

In India, Classified Matrimonial Advertisements is a particularly important source of revenue for all newspapers.  All Sunday issues will have a few pages dedicated to this one area.  Here is a sample of a page in our Hindustan Times.


Ranjan and I were sitting and having a man to man chat last evening when Ranjan received a phone call from one of his friends who was trying to help a foreigner decipher some Punjabi matrimonial ads. Ranjan was asked as to what NM at the end of such ads meant and I was asked as he did not know. I did not either and I rang up the only Punjabi friend that I could think of Teji and asked him the same and I was promptly told that it stood for Non Mangalik. When I shared this information with Ranjan’s friend, he wanted to know more about Mangala Dosha and I had to explain that too.


A while later, we received another call asking what DU stood for and this one was easy. It was to indicate that the bride or the groom obtained a degree from the Delhi University as opposed to the less preferred universities of the Punjab.

Phew, again!

And then, as my synchronicity does repeatedly, I was drawn to this story in the New York Times. Please read it fully and the video is exceptionally good too.

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23 Responses to Matrimonial Advertisements.

  1. Grannymar says:

    I read the article, neither the video or slide show worked for me.

    Had my father ever tried to influence my choice of partner in life, I would have told him in no uncertain terms where to get off, I have introduced six couples who eventually married, but they were introduced to each other as my friends and no more.

    As an aside, I think that 30 is the proper age to think about settling down into marriage, by that stage we have a better idea of what we really want for and from a partner. When I look back at all the guys I knew and hung about with in my late teens and early twenties, they are all fine men and did well in life, but none of them would have been the right partner for me.
    Grannymar recently posted..Just because

  2. Linda P. says:

    I was able to read the linked article and watch the slideshow. The article might have noted the differences from what we see in Bollywood productions, but that couple in particular have beauty that was Bollywood-worthy, don’t they? It’s hard for us to understand customs that are not ours, but when I have seen young girls marry clearly dangerous young men despite their parents’ distraught pleadings and then suffer abuse, I confess to fleeting moments of thinking, maybe arranged marriage has its benefits, too. And then I remember how horrified my parents were when I married my husband 45 years ago, so prejudiced against his Italian-American heritage that they didn’t tell me until the last moment whether they would attend my wedding. They certainly didn’t know what was best for me. There are no easy answers in any culture, are there?

    • No. And there are increasing number of women and men here, at least in the metros who do not want to get married at all. May be another century down the line, the world will be a different place altogether.

  3. shackman says:

    We’ve turned our version into a reality TV show…
    shackman recently posted..Predictive Texting

  4. tammy j says:

    i am trying to fathom the kind of parental love that would make parents strangle their own daughter over a marriage arrangement. good grief.
    everything in me rails at that type of finding a mate. but perhaps like linda says… there are no easy answers. and cultures are all different.
    in america there seems to be a trend of young people waiting until much later to get married now. it’s all very interesting!
    tammy j recently posted..simple saturday two

  5. Ursula says:

    Am now losing myself in reverie who my parents would have chosen for me. My father – who went ballistic on introducing my first boyfriend to him – would have probably opted for putting me in a nunnery.

    Consulting astrology? Now that’s funny. I once had my chart done. Will try and dig it out. Won’t be surprised to find Mars in my ascendant having a lot to answer for, making me a most unsuitable (Indian) bride.

    Ursula recently posted..Band Aid

  6. I was only 24 when I got married, but I knew Andy was a great choice for the long haul. We both married for life, and we’ve been through a lot together. After 50 years the bond is stronger than ever.
    Cheerful Monk recently posted..What’s in a Name?

  7. Vivek Bhat says:

    It’s not only the Punjabis, but many other communities where Manglik/Non-Manglik is a marriage breaker. One of my Marathi friends had to wait for three long years before he got his Manglik match! In Kashmiris also, this is a first thing that gets checked :D.
    And, these marriage related idiosyncrasies are not just limited to Punjabis only. Many communities have their own magazines, and their own eccentricities, like Indian obsession(crossing regional and cultural boundaries) with fair and tall brides, and 5/6 figure salary grooms 🙂

    • Yes, I am aware of that, but in this case, the foreigner was from Canada and was wondering what the fuss was all about regarding a Punjabi friend from there.

  8. bikehikebabe says:

    Actually my mother alerted me that Tom would make a good husband. Phew!! I might have found myself stuck with someone else.

    My brother’s wife (nobody prettier & very nice) asked for a separation & he put in a newspaper ad for new prospects. So he got a new wife.

  9. Interesting article and video. I just can’t imagine my parents having a hand in my marriage choice – they did lousy jobs of choosing their own mates! I met my husband in grad school and we had a very good marriage for many years. I don’t think having it be arranged would have altered the ending of it. And I’l choose my next husband as well. 😉
    Secret Agent Woman recently posted..I may actually get caught up here and get to move on to gardening posts.

    • I chose mine and she hers, and we stuck together through all kinds of weather for forty years before death did us apart. On the other hand, I know of failures in both ways of choosing one’s spouse in India.

  10. Cathy in NZ says:

    cultural ideals in different parts of the world, make fascinating reading. I wonder if in other parts of the world, these strong traditional models are still really the norm or have they transgressed into “what you want” – my parents had absolutely no say in my choice, they couldn’t even ask him anything – nor did they see a photograph of him for probably a year – all before modern communication that we have here so easily… And to boot I was across the ditch in Australia…

    We split in the early 1990s – we see one another from time to time as pure friends and speak on the blower about various other things. He is my chief light bulb changer…and will call around and do such things.

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