“We are happy about getting married"
A unique wedding was held in Multan, Punjab, Pakistan where six sisters from one household married six brothers from another household.
Both the households belong to the same extended family.
The brides and grooms are all cousins.
Although multiple weddings at a single event are not rare in Punjab, this particular wedding surprised many.
The six daughters of Mohammed Lateef tied the knot with their six cousins in a lavish wedding on December 14, 2021.
Since then, social media users continue to debate the event with many criticising the marriage.
One user wrote: “Watta satta, ensuring no one lives happily ever after.”
Another added: “If one couple don’t succeed in establishing good relations and their partnership fails, it may also affect the other sisters.
“As is usually observed in Pakistani khandaan.”
A third commented: “Good luck to them all. Although I would advise people against marrying their first cousins, especially over multiple generations.”
One of the grooms, Shafiq, claims it was a “love marriage” and prays for “lifetime companionship”.
Anum, one of the six sisters, expressed her happiness on the big day.
Anum said: “We are happy about getting married on the same day.”
The six sisters wore traditional red wedding outfits whilst two of them wore the same salwar kameez.
The grooms were also dressed in traditional outfits.
The six brothers made a Punjabi-style entrance to the venue and performed bhangra before entering the hall.
When the sisters departed for their new home, the family members got emotional.
Another groom, Shakeel, said: “We are happy that a new joint family has been formed.”
Sajjad, another groom, said: “We all brothers share a good bond among us.”
Zahoor Baksh, the father of the grooms, said:
“We have always held grand multiple wedding events and accepted whatever came from the family elders.”
The father of the grooms added that the group wedding will help them to reduce the financial burden.
The six couples plan to share a single-family house.
Watta satta is an exchange marriage that is a common practice in Pakistan.
The custom involves the marriage of a brother-sister pair from two households.
In some cases, it involves uncle-niece pairs or cousin pairs.
The custom involves a non-verbal clause of mutual threat across the marriages.
A husband who divorces his wife in this arrangement can expect his brother-in-law to similarly retaliate against his sister.
In rural parts of Pakistan, watta satta accounts for over 30% of all marriages.
Many have called for the custom to be abolished, stating it is ‘harmful’.