In the past one week, a magistrate in Lucknow has got 6,000 applications.
Lucknow: What is a 'baraat' without a 'band' or a 'baaja'? The bridegrooms in Uttar Pradesh this wedding season are certainly not ready to cut out the band and the baaja from their baraat.
At a time, when they should be relaxing, soaking in the celebrations and getting pampered by friends and family members, the grooms are huffing and puffing from one office to another, trying to get permission for playing music in their wedding.
Following a Supreme Court order, the Yogi Adityanath government has strictly imposed the ban on use of loudspeakers and gadgets for high decibel sound, impacting the DJ parties across the state.
Now, using a DJ in the weddings or other functions requires permission from the area magistrate. The permission form needs approval from the local police and traffic cops. After the police give their nod, the form goes to the magistrate who puts the final seal of approval.
Since it is an immediate family member who has to take the permission, it is the bridegrooms, in most cases, who are doing the running around.
"I had to run around for permission for almost one week before I succeeded in the mission. Most of the time, the magistrate was not available, then the local police officials could not be traced and it was another onerous task to get back to the magistrate. If you questioned their absence, the answer was 'We have better things to do than grant permission for music", said Rohti Sabharwal, who managed the permission a day before his wedding on February 12.
Himanshu Kapoor was not so lucky and had to forego the 'baaja' for his 'baraat' on February 11.
"I kept trying to get the permission for almost eight days and then finally gave up. My friends decided to help me out and played the guitar for me at the wedding. Of course, we had to cut out the dancing form the celebrations", he said.
Another groom, who is scheduled to marry later this month, said that he had to grease quite a few palms before getting the permission. "I liberally gave money to the lower staff at the magistrate's office and then at the police station and they ensured the permissions for me. I only had to collect the form at the given time and take it over to the next official," he said.
In a majority of the cases, it is the groom who is doing the running around. "The elderly family members do not think that 'baaja' is important for the 'baraat' so I took over the responsibility," said Rakshit Wadhwa, who got married last week.
Lucknow district magistrate Kaushal Raj Sharma’s office, according to sources, has received more than 6,000 applications for permissions to use DJs at weddings in the past one week alone. If this is the rush in Lucknow alone, one can imagine the situation in the remaining districts.
While individuals are made to run helter-skelter for permissions, hotels are apparently exempted from this exercise.
"If you have wedding functions on roof top areas of five star hotels, there will be no problem because the cops never seem to hear the blaring music that comes from there," said Sheena Misra who lives near a five star hotel in Gomti Nagar and used Twitter to lodge a complaint with police, which never responded.