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Sandra C George

Tragedy Classics Crime

4.0  

Sandra C George

Tragedy Classics Crime

Dowry ruling marriages

Dowry ruling marriages

3 mins
145


Here’s an offer: 25 cents of land, 100 sovereigns of gold and a car costing less than ten lakhs. After some time, the demand became 10 lakhs of rupees in cash, instead of a car, along with already mentioned demands. Amusing, isn’t it?


In India, 12 women lose their lives in the name of dowry. . .Either they take their own lives or are killed by the perpetrators. In our God’s own country of Kerala, almost 15 lakh marriages take place annually. It is, but well known that almost 98 percent of these marriages involve more than decent amount of dowry, as a well-accepted social custom.


It is indeed curious to know that dowry was made illegal in this great country under the regime of three prime ministers, namely, Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi. Despite this, look at the present state of things here!


From 1991 to 2011, cases registered under the dowry act adds up to a meagre digit of 15. When both parties involved are convicted as equally guilty under a law, reporting it becomes a hard task indeed. The main authority head under the Dowry Act in each district is the respective sub-collector of the district. Not many people, or the sub-collectors themselves are aware of this fact. The state of Kerala witnesses almost 9000 suicides per day, fifty percent of these are made of young people. One thousand and five hundred of these constitute suicides committed due to dowry hassles.


All religions blindly follow this one social custom of giving and receiving dowry, even if nothing of this sort is explicitly mentioned in scriptures. Even as the parish priest joins two souls in holy matrimony, many parents make sure to shower them with wealth and gold outside the parish hall. The only prophet who considered woman as wealth is Mohammed Nabi. . .That men should give a bride price to the girl in order to get married is something that he put forward. . .Even today in Muslim communities men remain unmarried because they couldn’t procure the bride price. No, not in God’s own Kerala but in Arab countries elsewhere. When it comes to Muslim communities in Kerala, the story is just the opposite. The bride brings with her almost an entire jewellery shop as ornaments and other wealth. Other religions like Hinduism as well Christianity are equally boisterous when it comes to giving dowry. Near and dear ones are more interested in how much gold the bride brings, than the feast itself, meant exclusively for them. Marrying off a daughter with such pomp and splendour, makes them adamant in getting as much in return when their sons bring home brides for themselves.


Where is this country going? 


During this time, I can but only remember with a certain pain the words of my friend who said;


 “India is growing, it is growing backward to go a couple of centuries behind, into an ancient age”.


Everyone says that the girl itself is the wealth offered in a marriage. . .Better a divorced daughter in your own home, than a dead daughter at her husband’s home.


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