The Indian Wedding Horse

It was a cold December night. I was shivering, many saw me, but none noticed. The horsemen were preparing me for the fifth consecutive marriage tonight. I neighed, expressing my wishes plainly, and as though deaf, they ignored me. Music was blaring like hell, and my ears were on the verge of bleeding. 

Yet again, nobody noticed.

I was mounted at a high platform, supposedly, they were waiting for the groom to arrive. Suddenly, I was given a violent tug on my lead rope. I got startled and gave out a loud neigh. They were trying to get me down from the platform, but I believed the fall would break my already weary legs. Then the beating started… They hit me so hard that I had to take the risk of jumping. This time, somebody noticed… a boy, I saw him crying.

The band flared its already loud music as presumably, the groom had arrived. Then came the part I dreaded… They mounted the full-grown man on my already aching back.

I was tugged to keep moving. After a procession that lasted 20 minutes and felt like 20 hours, the groom finally dismounted. 

I am a mature 16-year-old horse. I have been a racehorse, and life wasn’t that better back then. After I slipped in the mud and broke my leg, the racer sold me off to the local marriage organisers. I still limp, but no human has ever observed my misery. I am a machine to their eyes. When I die, they will throw me away, no one shall mourn…

It seems like it’s time to leave. Another marriage, more pain, endless agony.

~ Just Another Indian Wedding Horse


Using horses in marriages is plain animal cruelty. How can one celebrate while some other being suffers? That too in front of your own eyes.

Traditions of the past need not always be righteous. Yes, being firmly rooted to our roots is necessary, but one must strive ahead, considering if all practices are still relevant.

~ Arnav Gupta

Published by BookWorm

I am a 15-year-old bookworm. Reading is the fuel that I need to survive! It gives me a greater sense of the big world around me from my cosy couch. I have made reading my best companion and a teacher. The happiness reading brings me is immense. I read books of all genres, and here is the take on the books from a book worm's view!

39 thoughts on “The Indian Wedding Horse

  1. Thanks for the opportunity to learn something new about traditional Indian culture. Your blog prompted me to do some reasearch. Now I know a little bit about the custom of using white horses in wedding ceremonies.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I wanna applaud you for writing on this topic! We have so much fun when someone in our family gets married, and in the celebration we hurt poor horses…at some point I ignore them too but you just brought this to my attention…maybe things will change and people will realize their mistake. I loved reading this, it was brilliant !

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks a lot! I got real upset when I saw the horse I wrote about. I had zero fun that day…
      My job’s done if people are getting aware of this horrific ordeal.
      Have a wonderful day!

      Liked by 2 people

    1. I am glad that people are aware how horrific Amer Fort’s elephant rides are. I have read that those poor elephants are gravely hurt, and many suffer from diseases such as Tuberculsis.
      Have a wonderful day 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks a lot, Khushi! I seem to connect with every animal. For instance, I have seen a caged parrot in a house in our society. Whenever I pass that house, I hear a cry for help… Never, ever cage birds!
      Have an awesome day 😀


  3. My, this is just so heartbreaking, Arnav! The way you brought out the emotions and pain of the horse is just brilliant. Brilliant, just like yourself! I love how you advocate against animal cruelty in such simple instances- everyone’s focused on the groom, but I’m glad there’s someone to look at whom he’s riding on.
    In the South, we do not have this concept of groom riding on horses at all, and so far, I haven’t attended a wedding where this custom is observed. Only ever seen it on TV.

    Exploiting animals for human benefits has happened throughout history, not just in Indian weddings, but everywhere- leisure horse riding, sports and why, even for warfare. They were once used as a mode of transportation. Thank goodness civilisation has moved away from such times and that technology has developed enough to save our animal friends a lot of burden.
    Horse riding is a literal Olympic sport. They are still used in parades and are an integral part of many British Royal Family customs. There are many practices we’ll have to question, not just in India, but across the world. The human superiority complex is real. We treat animals as subordinate to us, especially when they cannot cater to human needs. 🤷‍♀️ We’re a selfish species from the start
    Sorry for the looong comment. You did a great job writing from the perspective of the horse.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I always get nervous answering your comments! I am afraid my answer won’t be as lovely and passionate as your comment!
      Oh wow, I didn’t know that. So they don’t use horses in the weddings of the south? Awesome!
      You are absolutely right, it’s not only an issue of India, but of the entire world.
      Have a wonderful day 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This is beautiful…
    You really got me there in the beginning😄 was wondering who the poor guy was only to discover, it’s the horse.

    Beautiful write-up.
    It’s true sometimes, we over do it to these paining yet quiet animals.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, thank you so much, Jermena! I appreciate your comment.
      Just yesterday, I read your write-ups on your journey to India. Welcome to my country! I hope you have a fun time, and excel in your studies.
      Have a nice day 😀


  5. This is such a highly empathetic piece. You’ve done well to enlighten your audience on animal cruelty, especially in your region. Hopefully, we will all feel what animals feel when we subject them to harsh conditions and perhaps change our ways.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It’s so true and sad Arnav…there are unfortunately very very few in the world like you who truly empathise with all animals and feel their pain and try to help. Rest of us humans are too self involved in our own problems and blindly go ahead with these age old rituals which don’t even make sense anymore today….😔


    1. Hey there, Violet! I have been quite sick of late, so I wasn’t able to respond to your beautiful comments. There are no campaigns to end this horrid practice. You see, when it comes to religious ceremonies, people just don’t want to damn change! Here, most people see PETA as some malicious foreign agent.
      I read your suggestion on me being a Beta Reader. But I just don’t want to mix money with books. I can’t read drafts that aren’t even printed books!
      Thank you so much for all the lovely comments 😀 I have been trying to follow the new episodes of Reflecto Girl!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m so sorry you’ve not been well. Are you feeling better now?
        I love that you don’t want to taint your passion for reading with money. I was just thinking of you being able to earn your living doing something you love, but actually I think Beta readers are probably all just volunteers – friends or friends of friends of the author 😀
        Get well soon my friend ❤


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