The snake charmers’ community in Chhattisgarh’s Korba District observes an ancient bizarre ritual of making the bride carry nine different species of snakes as dowry.
Refusal to do so ends up in a marriage not being solemnized.
It is often the case in the remote tribal hamlets of the state that parents of a girl are desperate to collect nine different snakes to ensure that this dowry ritual takes place without a hitch.
The 25, 000 snake charmers in the state are very particular about carrying out this age-old custom.
Eligible bachelors and betrothed youngsters have to wait for a long time, and even sometimes indefinitely, till their parents are able collect the nine snakes. Some marriages are cancelled in despair.
“In our community, we cannot get married till the time we get the nine snakes of different species,” claimed Durjan Sapera, a member of the snake charmers community.