Strange advertisement seeks marriage of dead people in Karnataka

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Mangaluru (Karnataka): A recent newspaper advertisement seeking a groom for a woman who passed away three decades ago has become the talk of the town here in Dakshina Kannada district.


The unconventional advertisement, originating from a family in Puttur in Dakshina Kannada district, aims to arrange a marriage for their deceased daughter, believing that her unmarried status in the afterlife may be causing ongoing misfortunes.

Thirty years ago, tragedy struck the family when their infant daughter passed away. Since then, they have faced unexpected challenges.

Seeking guidance from elders, they were told that their deceased daughter’s unsettled spirit might be at the root of their troubles.


To bring peace to her soul, the family decided to arrange a marriage for her - an unique and poignant endeavour.

To find a groom for somebody who died 30 years ago, the parents got an advertisement published in a widely read newspaper in the district.

The advertisement reads: "Seeking groom who passed 30 years ago for a bride (sic) who passed 30 years ago. Please call the number to arrange a Pretha Maduve (marriage of spirits)." Despite exhaustive efforts by relatives and friends, finding a suitable deceased groom of the same age and caste proved elusive, say the heartbroken parents.


This unconventional practice underscores a longstanding tradition in Tulunadu – the region spread across three coastal districts of Karnataka and portion of neighbouring Kasargod district in Kerala where local dialect Tulu is spoken.

In this region, arranging marriages for deceased individuals holds deep emotional significance.

According to Tuluva folklore experts, the departed remain connected to their families, sharing in their joys and sorrows. As a result, rituals like ‘Vaikunta Samaradhane’ and ‘Pinda Pradana’ are eschewed in favour of offerings of food and the arrangement of marriages for departed souls.