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At Aviva’s wedding, her husband (and most of the congregation) couldn’t read the Hebrew script.

Given the centuries since the Bene Israeli fled to India, most modern Jews have neglected reading the scriptures in the original language.

Traditions from both the Indian and Jewish heritage find representation here.

The community rendition of Hava Nagilah and the “chair dance” have remained wedding favourites locally.

But even as all prayers are recited in Hebrew, a majority of the Indian Jewish community cannot speak or read the language anymore.

Equally popular are enthusiastic singalongs and dances from Bollywood films.

Indian cuisine is popular at Jewish wedding receptions, albeit with a kosher twist.

As all Jewish weddings are on Sundays, the application of henna begins two days earlier on Friday mornings.

But apart from decorating the bride’s hands, other local rituals include wearing a garland strung from jasmine flowers and smearing a yellow paste of turmeric on both the bride and the groom’s faces.

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