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Marriages in Kamma Caste

The castes in Andhra Pradesh can be divided into two distinct categories. etc., Nayudu, Kapu, Mala, Madiga, Reddy, Kamma, Brahmin, Komati, Yanadi castes are based on their tribal, cultural and religious differences, while the castes like Chakali (washerman), Kummari (potter), Kammari (smith), Kamsali (goldsmith), Mangali (barber) etc are based on the nature of work or occupation. With a few exceptions like Brahmins, all these castes are uniquely localized in Andhra Pradesh. Each caste has a deity and distinct social formalities.

In the prayer room of every Kamma home, there used to be swords and spears marked with the names of ‘ancestors’. These weapons were called Veerulu (heroes). The weapons were worshipped during festivals and kept in a box called “Veerulu Pette”, (heroes’ box). Even today, during marriages Sami puja (worshiping Sami tree) is being performed in certain areas. The bride’s brothers escort their sister and brother-in-law to the tree, with drawn swords. Another distinct feature of Kamma matrimony is they have the custom of worshipping ‘Veerabhadra’ during marriages. The bride has to walk through a fire of red hot coal. Adugulaku Madugulu (washermen walk ahead of the procession of Kammas laying carpets or dupattas on which the Kammas walk without their feet touching the ground), is another notable custom.
Kamma matrimony is generally celebrated at the house of the bridegroom; but, if it is a case of kannikadhanam (presenting the girl without claiming the bride’s price), it is at the house of the bride. On the first day of the marriage rites, the petta mugada sangyam, or box-lid ceremony is performed.

The new clothes for the bridal couple, five plantains, nuts and pieces of turmeric, one or two combs, four rupees and the bride-price in money or jewels, are placed in a box, which is placed near the parents of the contracting couple.
Kamma matrimony is generally celebrated at the house of the bridegroom; but, if it is a case of kannikadhanam (presenting the girl without claiming the bride’s price), at the house of the bride. On the first day of the marriage rites, the petta mugada sangyam, or box-lid ceremony is performed. The new clothes for the bridal couple, five plantains, nuts, and pieces of turmeric, one or two combs, four rupees, and the bride-price in money or jewellery, are placed in a box, which is placed near the parents of the contracting couple.

The maternal uncle of the bride has to carry the bride in a basket to the dias, indicating he is forfeiting his right to marry the girl. In some areas, the bridegroom has to cut seven strings of thread tied around the Kalyana Vedika (dias) with a sword. The kammas wear sacred thread made of silver during marriages.

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