The Last Jewish Wedding in Calcutta: Ceremony at Maghen David
The Last Jewish Wedding
Esther Hazarika and Errol Jacob, 1982
Esther is the daughter of the late Jogesh and Lily Hazarika. Jogesh was a renowned personality from Assam. Esther married Errol Jacob, the son of the late Ezekiel and Seemah Jacob.
Esther and Errol’s wedding in the Maghen David synagogue took place on the 19th of December 1982. It was historic, as it was the last Jewish wedding to take place in the synagogue. Esther says that she thought it would be the last wedding as there was so few Jews left in Calcutta by then.
Esther’s wedding dress was made by Maggie Myers who was known throughout Calcutta as one of the best dressmakers. She made wedding dresses for so many members of the community. The many-tiered wedding cake came from Nahoums.
Esther remembers her wedding as very special and very elaborate event.
“There were guests from all over India and abroad in attendance as my father was so well respected in Assam.” Esther says: “the different religious represented among the guests in attendance was a picture of love and community harmony that she cherishes.” Jo Cohen, whose daughter Emma was a flower girl affirms the diversity of people in attendance: “I never saw so many non-Jewish guests in the synagogue before.”
The synagogue wedding was followed by a reception at the Jewish Girls' School.
The next day there was a formal dinner at the Saturday Club. For this occasion Esther wore the Mekhela Chadar (traditional Assamese dress) in honor of her father and his ties to Assam.
Esther and her husband immigrated to Israel. Her sister Eva lives in Paris.