The couple commit to enter into wedlock and to refuse other proposals of marriage. Ardaas is said and gifts are exchanged.
This is an unofficial engagement ceremony where the groom's family and friends come give blessings to the bride to be. The origin of this ceremony lies in the arranged marriage norm, where the parents would announce that they are looking for a suitable match for their son or daughter, and once they had found that match, their search had come to an end. Though rings are not exchanged, the couple stand unofficially engaged after this ceremony.
Engagement is a significant part of a Punjabi wedding. . First, the girl is draped with a chunni (stole), which is usually very ornate. In some families this chunni is a family heirloom, passed down
from generation to generation. She is also presented with jewelry, which her mother and sister-in-law help her wear. A tiny dot of henna paste (mehndi) is applied to her palm for good luck, and the function is sealed with the exchange of rings. The bride's father applies the tikka (forehead mark) to the groom's forehead, blesses him. Everyone present congratulates the couple by feeding them sweets.
There is a sangeet function hosted by the bride's family, in which just a few close members of the groom's family are invited. The bride's family play the dholak drums and sing songs in which they tease the groom and his family. Nowadays, people hire DJs and have a dance party, followed by dinner. A ladies sangeet is held for the bride and her bridesmaids.
The last major function before the wedding
is decoration with temporary henna (mehndi) tattoos. Mehndi artists are called to the houses of the boy and girl and apply mehendi to the palms of the female family members, and the hands and feet of the bride. A basket containing Bindi and bangles is handed around so girls can choose those that match the outfit they plan to wear to the wedding. The Mehandi ceremony takes place in the atmosphere of a party. The bride and other ladies get mehendi (henna designs) done, on their hands and feet (most ladies get it done only on their hands but the bride gets it done on both hands and feet). For the bride the mehndi is sent by the future Mother in Law, which is beautifully decorated.