Why do Hindus attach special importance to the selection of partners?
Amongst Hindus it is a firm belief that marriage partners should not be from the same family. To ensure that the man and woman are not from the same gotra (lineage or ancestry), it is customary to check the gotra before marriage. Religious texts say marriages within the family are irreligious, condemnable and sinful.
It is suggested that five generations from the maternal side and seven from the paternal side must be avoided in marriage. Only marriages beyond these are considered proper. When the partners are closely related, children born thereof do not develop normally. It is due to inbreeding that animal and birds have not developed substantially.
Genetics confirms this belief. When parents are closely related, recessive genes that control undesirable characteristics dominate in the children, causing improper development. In contrast, when the man and the woman hail from different families and lineages, the children are strong, healthy and normal.
When the man and woman do not belong to six generations from the maternal side and also do not come from the father's lineage, marriage between the two is good.
Scientists have confirmed that children born of closely related parents are prone to deformities as well as health and emotional problems. The incidence of these problems is