In ancient literature of India many references can be found for widow marriage. In the Vedic age, marriage of widows was allowed within every caste. As per Narad Purana three types of widow marriages exist:
- As per Rig-Veda those women whose husbands are expired can go for another marriage. This Veda states that a widow should stop thinking again and again about her deceased husband and accept the marriage proposal of any man who likes her.
- Remarriage is allowed for those women who left their husband but return to him after leaving their lover.
- Remarriage is allowed for those women who have gone through all wedding rituals but never slept with their husband.
The practice of window getting married to the brother-in-law was prevalent in historic India. Even in epic era, the widow wedding was allowed. As per Manu Smriti’s texts a woman who does not get involved with any physical relationship with her husband is allowed to remarry. In the middle ages, Chandragupta Vikramaditya also got married to the wife of his deceased brother.
The widow remarriage got legalized as per the Hindu Widow Remarriage Act of 1856. This has improved the life of windows in India and now they can choose another life partner after their husband’s death. Remember that everyone wants to be loved and a widow is also a human being like others. A widow marriage can bring smile to a sorrow woman. But Indian men have to be more moderate thinkers to make widow marriage a common practice in society.