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Arts/Society Modernization Replacing Punjabi Culture?


Aug 17, 2010
World citizen!
Each culture in the world follows its own ethnicity and moral value. These traditions, however, are sometimes broken just to maintain a status in the society, or are still kept right through the culture’s survival. The wave of rock and pop music numbers along with obscene dancers have replaced old traditional numbers, like Mangane di geet, Maneve de gaon and Gharouli de geet. No wonder then Bollywood has latched on to this culture

Earlier, the Sangeet, prior to a wedding, used to carry on for at least ten days. With the passage of time, people could no longer afford to spend so much time on this occasion. Moreover, it was realized that the occasion is sure to lose its charm if it is going to continue for a strenuously long time. As soon as it became a one night occasion, its charm reached a different peak.

If we see the modern sangeet ritual, one can easily get a hint of how rich Punjabis have intentionally changed their small family function, which used to be enjoyed to energetic dholki sounds, have now been replaced by the dramatic bollywood numbers, where the whole family wants to give their best performance. Not only at the sangeet ceremony, but these days you can observe that the dancing baraatis are replaced by stoic faces twiddling thumbs on plastic chairs, who just want to take pleasure in watching obscene dancers, dancing on vulgar numbers.

Surely, most of us, in our childhood, must have heard the famous Punjabi folk song, Veer Meraya Oye Jugni and in every sangeet these beautiful lines were sung over and over again in the chorus. Most of us really hardly understand the line but simply loved it.

Surprisingly, the charm of these traditional numbers was when the number was again sung in Dev D, for many Punjabis the image of the girl in yellow salwar kameej carrying a tokra over her head, walking with her back towards the camera got shaken and tainted. “They are taking away both the sanctity and the spontaneity of the event,” says Dr. Mohanmeet Khosla, Associate Professor, School of Communication Studies, Panjab University.

Now they only have one concern; how they can make their wedding ceremonies attractive and in the race of this dramatization they have forgotten their rich Punjabi culture. Which dance group is being hired; how the reception entertainment is running; and what type and quantity of alcoholic drinks are going to be served; is more important than how the lavan ceremony is going running. So much so, that in many instances the bridegroom has no clue as to what is expected of him during the lavan.

The times have changed. Punjab no longer moves as per their traditional notions. Today the youth doesn’t know how their grandparents used to recite soothing boliyans, which vibrated the wedding ceremonies with the popular songs of marriage songs sung with Dholaki, Goriyan and Suhag numbers at the sangeet ceremony. Change is the law of nature and everything simply changes. But the real question that arises here is that why do we have to follow the attraction popularly mooted by Bollywood.

So the right time has come to remind the big fat Indian wedding planners that Punjab is the most colorful state of India. Punjabis are commonly known as largehearted jolly people, and they live their life happily and vigorously. People out here believe in enjoying every single moment of their lives. Without a doubt, their marriage ceremonies are one big festival, but we should not forget that nothing can replace the sound of the Dholkai sound and boilyas, and the culture of Punjab is very rich, and the people are so attached to their land that they have still preserved their customs in its very original form.
Himani Bahuguna



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Jun 13, 2012
Nagpur, India
Yes, it's very sad that Punjabi cultural is dying gradually & modernization or say western is replacing it. It's a human tendency to always seek for a change but the change at times is bad especially in terms of culture.

I personally feel Punjab had a rich culture & should have been maintained even being modernized but that never happened....sad !!

We see, there's no fun now in marriages as in previous times. I hardly see kids playing in villages outdoors infact i don't think there's any village left in Punjab with so many modern amenities. Previous time i use to see Punjabi themselves in the farms sweating hard & doing Kirt but it's now replaced by Bihari labours & Punjabi youth is more towards alcohol .. Evn the dresses have changed ...

Gyani Jarnail Singh

Sawa lakh se EK larraoan
Jul 4, 2004
Previously Punjabi Sikh farmers doing kirt in their fields..NOW....hundreds of thosuands of SANTS, Brahmgyanis, Deras..Mahapurshss..who bring TROLLEYS and GUNNIS to Farmers houses and grab as much wheat rice as possible..do instant ardss and chhoo mantar..raffoo chaker..KIRT is repalced by KIRT"AN"....dholkis chennas chamtas huge tents darbaars, nagar jaloos...millions of "amrti valleh Banneyeh..par everywhere you trun GHONAS MONAS alcoholics drug....addicts lyinga round lifeless...

I think Punjab has been flooded with TOO MUCH "AMRIT SANSKAAR SESSIONS"...too many Amrtidharees are being manufactured and RECYCLED for NUMBERS GAME...


Jan 29, 2011
Vancouver, Canada
There was a time when I was known to make my own boliyaan at sangeet festivals :D

Now most Punjabi weddings are about loud DJs and deep fried food. We barely get to sit and relax in a wedding place, or talk.



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