Wedding planner Nayana Bakshi, 38, can’t stop grinning. “The last few years have been terrible for professionals like me. With the market nose-diving, everybody only had cost on their minds. They want the Bollywood style taam-jhaam, but bargain when I talk of money. At least 2014 will keep me in business,” said Lokhandwala resident Bakshi.
The reason Bakshi and other wedding planners are excited about 2014 is that according to the Hindu almanac, except for August, September and October, the remaining nine months have muhurats to tie the knot. “It is very rare to come across this kind of positioning of planets and constellations,” said Pandit Digambar Joshi, who apart from conducting rituals as a priest, also reads palms and kundalis. “Generally, it’s 3-4 months maximum.”
Joshi points out how numbers can be overwhelming. “The number of registered pandits attached to our umbrella organisation is less than 2,800. And most people want us not only for weddings, but also for inaugurations, naming ceremonies and thread ceremonies,” said the Prabhadevi resident, who charges between Rs7,001 and 10,001 for a wedding.
Trousseau makers, decorators, wedding hall owners and caterers are also happy at the windfall awaiting them.
Borivli resident Sushil Kharade, 42 who runs a catering service, said: “This is good news to those who have larger manpower because they will be able to corner maximum business.” Kharade, however, is sceptical about taking on more work with his small team. Nikhat Mariyam Neerushaa, who designs for the small and big screen as well as high-profile weddings, agrees. “Looking for a particular kind of fabric, colour and a certain kind of embroidery/embellishment needs time. I fear some may want to compromise on quality for quantity.”
Not everyone is happy though. Vidisha Makhija, 26, is worried that her monsoon wedding will “ruin” everything. “My fiancé is in Dallas, US. If he can’t reschedule his leave, I’m staring at a June-end wedding. Can you imagine hitching up your ghaghra and making your fine wedding shoes go squish-squash on the wet floor? My family is trying to get the groom’s side to reconsider the date... I’m praying it works out,” said Makhija, a travel executive from Walkeshwar.