Challenging the Norms: Unveiling the Dark Side of Indian Weddings

Indian weddings are known for their grandeur and extravagance, but a new web show is shedding light on the hidden realities behind these opulent events. Made In Heaven, now in its second season on Amazon Prime Video, follows the story of a group of wedding planners who go to great lengths to create dream weddings for the elite in Delhi. The series has gained immense popularity in India, captivating audiences with its depiction of lavish ceremonies, stunning outfits, and gripping drama. However, alongside the praise, the show has also faced criticism for its portrayal of Muslims and allegations of not crediting a Dalit writer. Despite the controversies, Made In Heaven serves as a reflection of the deep-rooted problems that plague both marriages and Indian society as a whole.

Indian weddings hold a significant place in society, and the pressure to conform to traditional values and norms is immense. While metropolitan cities are experiencing a shift towards more modern approaches, arranged marriages remain the norm, with families playing a pivotal role in partner selection. Marriages are seen as a union not only between two individuals but also between their families. This belief influences various aspects of a couple’s life, from decisions about having children to the choice to call off a wedding or pursue a divorce.

Made In Heaven highlights these societal issues, presenting viewers with a critical lens into the flaws and inequalities within the Indian wedding industry. In one episode, the show addresses colorism, with a bride being constantly reminded of her “dark skin” and pressured to undergo treatments to make her skin appear “cleaner” and “brighter.” The portrayal of this struggle shines a light on the persistent beauty standards and prejudices faced by individuals in India. Another episode showcases domestic violence, as a groom’s mother questions a bride’s decision to call off the wedding despite witnessing the physical abuse inflicted by her son. The complexities of these relationships and the pressures to conform are depicted, revealing the dark underbelly of Indian marriages.

Furthermore, Made In Heaven deserves credit for its depiction of a Dalit wedding, a rare occurrence in mainstream entertainment. The protagonist, Pallavi Menke, fights against her upper-caste husband and in-laws to incorporate Buddhist wedding rituals into their celebrations. This subplot highlights the deep-rooted discrimination faced by Dalits, even within seemingly progressive families. By showcasing the struggles of a Dalit woman navigating her marital dynamics, the show sheds light on caste-based biases and prejudices that persist in Indian society.

However, despite its efforts to address pertinent societal issues, Made In Heaven has faced criticism on certain fronts. One episode, which explores polygamy in the Muslim community, has been accused of perpetuating stereotypes. Critics argue that the show’s portrayal fails to capture the diverse experiences and perspectives within the Muslim community. Additionally, the show has been embroiled in controversy due to allegations from Dalit writer Yashica Dutt, who claims her “life and words” were used in the Buddhist wedding episode without proper credit. The makers of the show deny these claims.

While some viewers find the show’s storytelling to be overly preachy and lacking nuance, it is undeniable that Made In Heaven has succeeded in starting conversations around taboo subjects. By highlighting the realities and complexities of Indian weddings, the series challenges societal norms and promotes dialogue on issues often swept under the rug. Through the friendship of Tara and Karan, two central characters dealing with their own personal struggles, the show also emphasizes the importance of love, solidarity, and companionship in relationships.

In conclusion, Made In Heaven provides an introspective look into the flaws and inequalities within the Indian wedding industry. By unmasking the unsavory realities behind the grandeur, the show sparks important conversations about deep-rooted societal issues such as colorism, domestic violence, caste discrimination, and polygamy. While it has faced criticism for its portrayals of marginalized communities and allegations of plagiarism, the show’s impact in challenging societal norms and initiating discussions cannot be ignored. Made In Heaven serves as a reminder that weddings are not just about extravagant celebrations but also platforms to address social injustices and promote change.