It has been a few months into trying out the prospect of arranged marriage. The decision came with the desire to find a decent, understanding companion I could share my life with. At the outset, let me tell you the process of finding a suitable match in this structure requires a considerable investment of time and energy. So after much deliberation, I finally decided to take the plunge. As an independent, working woman of today, why did I choose to do this? Not because of a lack of faith in the ability to fall in love organically but an inkling that perhaps sometimes love is not just enough.
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I was worried about the judgement that would come with it. I had to sit with that for a while and evaluate my reaction. It became very evident that I was trying to protect the problematic nature of traditions in my culture. The way love is defined changes over time, alongside our accessibility to the world; one screen swipe away. This system is global and established politically as well as socially.
Traditions in India have perpetuated these ideals to an unhealthy standard, which explains why the biggest selling beauty product in India is a skin lightening cream.
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Inside Netflix’s eye-opening look at arranged marriage, your next reality TV obsession
Skip to Content. People are matched in hopes of finding suitable marriage partner; marriage is marker of success in matchmaking process. Much of the advice given to women when trying to find compatible matches can be considered sexist; preferences for other attributes can be interpreted as racist or classist both within Western and Indian circles. Clients range from being inflexible in their criteria to being unwilling to commit.
Parents often state that all they want is happiness for their son or daughter, but then reveal very specific criteria for their future son- or daughter-in-law. Alcoholic beverages wine, champagne, cocktails are sometimes consumed during social gatherings and dates.
Taparia has been matchmaking wealthy Indian singletons for the past 15 years across the globe, counting some families in her database and resulting in more than marriages. Hers is an arranged marriage service, harnessing the practice of parents pairing their adult offspring with those of other, vetted families usually of a similar class and caste. Her process is thorough: she visits her clients at home, interviewing them on their requirements and lifestyle, as well as speaking to their parents before consulting an astrologer on their horoscopes and then feeding this information into her database to find a potential match.
Taparia has essentially commercialised the practices of south Asian aunties and grandparents around the world, forever touting their eligible young relatives. She is now the subject of an eight-part Netflix series, Indian Matchmaking , filming her process pairing prospective couples throughout India and the US. Where Netflix hits such as Love Is Blind took the concept of an arranged marriage to its extreme conclusion, here director Smriti Mundhra hopes her reality show will clear up stereotypes surrounding the practice.
Mundhra initially approached the topic from personal experience. And then in I wound up with Sima. Meanwhile, her mother wants her to find someone who can support her. Arranged marriages are very popular in India but its success is all up to destiny anyway. I treat them all as if they were my own children. Why is such importance placed on family? It may sound old-fashioned but Mundhra thinks attitudes in the US Indian diaspora are increasingly in favour of this approach.
Mundhra agrees there is a way to go before arranged marriages are equitable and modernised.
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The journey so far has been nothing short of a miracle. All that’s done out of love, is completely worth the trouble! Globe Icon An icon of the world globe. Link Copied. Representative Picture BI India. This home-grown app is among the top 5 grossing dating apps in India. Karuna Sharma. Homegrown app Aisle sees 3 million installs worldwide.
It is competing with the likes of Tinder, Bumble, OkCupid and is among the top 5 grossing dating apps in India. Aisle, an Indian dating club that unites singles offline, has seen over 3 million installs worldwide. This home-grown app is among the top 5 grossing dating apps in India and is competing with billion dollar American and Chinese companies like Tinder, Bumble, OkCupid and TanTan respectively.
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Indian Matchmaking: Why I have finally decided to go for arranged marriage For all the latest Lifestyle News, download Indian Express App.
I can give her…95 marks out of It is reflective, sometimes painfully, of a custom with which we are all too familiar: arranged marriages. For desis, either your parents were arranged or you know a couple that was. Some people—yep, even millennials—willingly enter into arranged marriages, as seen on the new reality show. While the show portrays arranged marriages in a positive although at times, vulnerable light, it simultaneously showcases the problems plaguing the ancient tradition—problems that Netflix account holders across America were quick to point out.
The casual, rampant racism on IndianMatchmaking is wild, and I fear fair will fly right over the heads of all the white people watching. The super-popular show has garnered criticism for its messages of colorism , classism, and body-shaming.
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Now available to stream, the series follows Mumbai-based matchmaker Sima Taparia as she painstakingly works with singles and their families in India and America to find desirable mates for marriage. One client, New Jersey-based event planner Nadia, wonders if her Indian-ness will come into question because of her Guyanese heritage. With the global reach of Netflix, Mundhra saw an opportunity to present a look at dating and relationships through the very specific lens of the South Asian experience that would reach a wide audience.
Since its premiere, the Netflix show has managed to grab a fan base with memes, oped pieces, and long Twitter threads. For the unversed, Indian Matchmaking follows Taparia as she matches hopeful singles in the US and India, and ultimately guides them through the arranged marriage process. Taparia, in an interview to Conde Nast Traveller , opened up on her procedure of finding a match, how she turned her hobby into a profession, and why none of the dating apps can ‘compete’ with her process.
Taparia was born in Gulbarga, Karnataka, and had an arranged marriage to Mumbai-based industrialist Anup Taparia at the age of As both families are well-connected, she began setting high-profile Indian couples up for marriage as a hobby, until she became so good at it that people suggested she do it professionally.
Soon, she set up Suitable Rishta , her matchmaking bureau based out of her apartment in the midtown Mumbai neighbourhood of Worli. She claims to be a ‘natural-born matchmaker,’ and a very social person who loves meeting new people. Sima adds she is thinking about matchmaking even while vacationing. Taparia says she follows a tried and tested method to achieve successful matches. As observed in the series, she visits the families, sees what their home is like, where they work, where they have been to school, tries to pick up the ‘unsaid information’ that has not been disclosed yet.
She adds this exercise helps her assess their lifestyles to recommend a match. She claims this is where Tinder, Bumble, and Shaadi. However, she also has a strict filter policy. Though she claims that things have changed in the recent past, she mentions that no one gets a complete percent on their checklist.