Even today commitments at the age of 8-12 years are not surprising, when we talk about the interior parts of the country. Though at some places, the marriages are fixed in the childhood, and when the kids reach their adulthood, they are married. It takes a lot of time for the bride to go and live with the in laws. This is called Expired Muklawa.
At this time of the ceremony, the gifts / dowry is given by the bride’s side, so that the couple can establish their new home. Muklawa is performed on the day, after which the Sami Partner, are made aware about their future husband and wife. Once they attain adulthood, there wedding is arranged. In the meantime the pair learns to respect and love each other.
Now in this time, Sikhs religion does not believe in child marriage. A Sikh has to be mature enough to be considered fit for marriage. In Sikhism code of conduct, a paper titled Reht Sikh Maryada (SRM) forbids child wedding. Before Wedding parties can be arranged, SRM Advises that a prospective bride or groom should reach at the age of both emotional and physical maturity.
Traditionally, Sikh marriages have been arranged and this custom persists in modern times also. A wedding in Sikhs is known as Anand Karaj wedding ceremony. In historic times, there used to be forced Arrange marriages and child wedding took place in India as early as two, three, or four years of age. After getting married, the bride generally used to live with the groom and his family, which may have included parents, grandparents, and uncles.
However in Sikhism, marriages are generally delayed till the time both the individuals attain puberty. The girl generally remains with her parents for a year or two and sent to the husband’s house only when she was regarded ready for childbearing.
The Gurus of Sikhs were also not escaped from getting married at an early age. Guru Gobind Singh got married at the early age of 11. Guru Har Kishan was an exception in this as he got married at the age of 24. By modern standards this may be considered young, however by that time he already was considered Guru for two years, following his father's death by tyrannical Mughal rulers. It is believed that his mother played an important role in saving him from child marriage.
In modern times, marriage in Sikhism is often delayed up to mid-20 or 30's, after-Higher Education is completed and a reliable torque is to be financially stable. Though it is still common for the bride to live with the groom's family, the pair may live independently depending on the circumstances.
Child Wedding and Polygamy (multiple marriages) by Sikh gurus
The 10th guru Shri Guru Gobind singh ji was involved in child wedding and multiple marriages. First at the age of 11 he married to Mata Jiito in 1677 then he got married to Sundri Mata ji at the age of 18 in 1684 and his third wife was Mata Sahib Dewan.