The key steps of Hindu wedding ritual are Kanyadaan and Paanigrahan, Vivaah Homa, Laja Homa and Agni Pradakshina, and finally Saptapadi according to Grihya sutras. Other rituals vary according to regional cultures but these are the key steps of a Hindu Marriage without which the marriage would not be considered complete. Traditionally, the bride’s parents host the wedding ceremony and the groom and his family are the guests arriving from outside to the Mandap. The whole wedding ceremony sort of depicts a story of first meeting of the bride and the groom at the wedding mandap, the bride’s parents giving her away to this worthy man, the couple committing to each other in front of the sacred fire followed by the couple taking the seven vows of commitment to the marriage and the friends and families blessing the newly wedded couple.
The groom arrives at the bride’s house and he is welcomed by the bride’s parents first with an arti, then by feeding a drink of milk and honey known as Madhu Parka ceremony and finally before he arrives at the mandap the bride’s father washes the groom’s feet. The bride arrives at the mandap and the couple lay their eyes on each other. These rituals are presented in various forms among different Indian communities.