‘Dowry’, as it is known in India, is one of the oldest prevailing so-called ‘customs’ of our great country. This country, which in the 21st century, is arguably one of the most powerful on the planet, largest democracy and stated to become one of the largest economies in the world some day! Yet, we still haven’t got rid of dowry, amongst others.
What exactly is dowry? As stated by a friend on her blog (which by the way is the inspiration behind this post), it is the price of a groom. Period. The bride’s family is forced into buying a match for their girl. How cool is that! What is most disturbing is the fact that these dowry demanders are none other than today’s bloody youth. Family pressure they say. How can an educated, twenty something male of today’s India succumb to that. Why can’t they oppose it? What are they risking? Will they not get married if they don’t take dowry? Will their families, cast or community boycott them? What is the fuckin problem?!?
Is money the problem? Go fuckin earn it, jackass! Why beg? And if that’s what you really wanna do, go hit the streets loser. It’s a thriving job for sure. What’s the difference between asking for dowry and begging anyway. All the same.
I know of many people, personally and by acquaintances, who have demanded and/or accepted dowry. Isn’t the bride’s family already giving away their girl to you? First, they give away their girl. Second, they end up paying off their asses for it. And thirdly, that’s not the end of it. Repeat demands and if, unfortunately, they are not fulfilled, I can only imagine the hell she has to face by her in-laws.
What is wrong with our fuckin society? Why can’t we put an end to this? All hell broke loose when women were beaten up by those rama sena goons in Mangalore. India’s youth stood up and made their voices heard. There are campaigns in place to oppose it. But is anyone doing anything about the dowry system?
I proudly state that I did not demand any dowry when I got married. Nor did anyone else from my family. And nor did I give my sister to a dowry demander. I strongly condemn it. I’d just like to ask one question to these dowry demanders. When you put a price tag on your boy, does this mean that your boy is worth that ‘x’ amount of money only? Can we so easily decide what your boy is worth? How do you decide the price then? For instance, if I am to sell a commodity, I take the cost of raw material, manufacturing costs, labor charges, transporting cost, taxes and then a profit margin. Do you decide your dowry this way? I bet you do! Then why not just put an ad in the paper and sell him off to the highest bidder?
Some families voluntarily give dowry (gifts/jewelery/cash etc) with their girl. Nothing wrong with that. It’s their girl and they decide what they wanna give. It’s up to them. Resist but, if they insist strongly, respect that.
Others argue that since they paid dowry for their girl, they will demand dowry for their boy. Well, in that case, if someone robs you, do you go and rob someone else? Or if someone jumps off a building, would you do the same? Eye for an eye, eh? Jokers!
It’s about time that we put a stop to this. There is awareness for sure; news reports on some one-off cases where the girl refuses to marry the guy and reported his family to cops. But more needs to be done. Guys/Boys/Men/whatever, please put your foot down. You are the one who is getting married. Not your families. You guys are educated. You are the future of this country. Respect that. Honor that.
PLEASE SAY NO TO DOWRY!
(I write this because one of my friends was asked for dowry recently. She refused the marriage proposal. Kudos to her)