Dowry? What Dowry???

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Dowry? What dowry???

Hello Athenas! I know, I know. It’s been a long time, but chill, here I am now. Something I came across recently caused me to write this. Some people, whether it’s through plain ignorance or pure malevolence, (doesn’t matter) are claiming that most of the reported dowry harassment cases are either false or over-exaggerated. Now this statement is downright ridiculous that instead of annoying me, it made me laugh my lungs out. Hysterical reaction perhaps? Maybe…

Image Courtesy Google

Image Courtesy Google

Seriously though, after my laughter had subsided, the anger and indignation set in. Okay, I agree that SOME people use anti-dowry laws to their advantage and make innocent spouses and in-laws suffer for whatever reason, but the majority of dowry harassment cases are NOT fabricated, nor are they figments of over-active imaginations.

Despite strict anti-dowry laws and a gazillion awareness campaigns against the practice of dowry, it’s still very much a menace. A few months back, a lady who worked as a maid in a nearby school was seen collecting donations from my neighbors for her daughter’s wedding. When we asked her why exactly she needed donations, she told us that the boy’s parents were demanding 10 sovereigns of gold as dowry, which she didn’t have. Some of us in the neighborhood gave her what we could. Well, me being the big mouth that I am didn’t stop with that. I told the lady that she should have taken a stand and refused to consider such a proposal the instant dowry was demanded. Fat lot of good it did me, though. The neighbors as usual labeled me an impractical big mouth who always wants to swim against the tide.

No problem with all the labeling. But any man who expects the bride to bring so-and-so things in order to get married, cannot be considered a real man,. (no offense all you men out there) And contrary to what we may be tempted to believe, the practice of demanding dowry is far from dead in India.

So what can be done to cut this off at the knees? More awareness campaigns? Stricter anti-dowry laws? No, we need look no further than ourselves to bring this abominable practice to a screeching halt, dear Athenas. All we need to do is rise as one, put down our foot firmly and simply REFUSE to even give the time of day to any prospective groom and / or his family who even breathes about dowry. Enough is enough. We don’t have to be on the receiving end anymore. It’s our fight and it’s up to us to take the offensive.

NO. It’s a simple 2-letter word. But saying it with courage and conviction has the potential to abolish this despicable practice which has snatched away the lives or ruined the mental peace of millions of Indian women, once and for all. If this happens, the term dowry would exist only within the pages of a dictionary.


The dowry problem has been there since ages but unless we women buck up and join forces there is no way we are going to say good bye to this social evil. Read more and see the whole picture Marriages – Made in heaven?Muslim wedding flight– this is an entire site dedicated to just people understanding the evil effects of dowry and She sells sea shells, not her.

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16 Responses

  1. I don’t think any self respecting woman should continue talking to someone if he even mentions dowry. But then I’m coming to understand that many people’s ideas of right and wrong are shaped almost entirely by what their parents tell them. They have no ideas of their own. Such is the strong influence “society” has on us :(

    But the anti dowry laws really need to be modified. With 6.5% of them being false, it’s remarkably high considering that the law mandates immediate arrest. Many Indian laws are written this way – too susceptible to abuse. It’s not a good thing.

  2. The practice of Dowry is an evil that has settled firmly into Indian society. However, the younger generation sees it as no more than another stupid custom that they inherited. It is those of the previous generation, the parents and grandparents; those brought up in extremely conservative families who still believe in this beggarly tradition.

    And yes, it may be hard in some cases, but if the lady puts her foot down against robbing her family and giving it all to her in-laws, that would be a great start. But it seldom happens, that’s what bothers me the most.

  3. matheikal says:

    The way the dowry system is practised is a heinous evil. But women (daughters) should have equal claim on parents’ property. There should be a way of ensuring that the daughters inherit it. Dowry was made for that initially…

    • Diana says:

      Well, equal inheritance is all fine, but that cannot be an excuse for anyone practicing the dowry system, which as you have so rightly put, is a heinous evil.

  4. nabanita says:

    Ohh don’t even get me started…How pathetic this stupid custom o rather evil is!!

  5. Abhra says:

    Well, this is a subject that has being in discussion for decades – yet the society seem to be lacking maturity on this. Don’t know why. Is that just greed?

    I also have a feeling that women need to change for this as well – because I have known many, from so called sane/social/educated society, who expect their son to bring dowry during marriage.

    I guess it won’t really go unless men attains some kind of enlightenment to see how badly this is going against their manhood.

    • shee_shee12345 says:

      Bang on the women need to make a change. The senior women need to stop asking for dowry and girls of marriageable age should stop thinking that dowry needs to be given by her parents.

    • Diana says:

      Well, if the prospective brides and their parents start saying a point-blank NO the moment dowry is mentioned in any form, men and their families will get the message loud and clear.
      We women need to look no farther than ourselves to weed out this menace. So come on!

  6. Very true…these days woman asks for dowry instead :)

  7. Indrani says:

    This dowry problem is so India specific, no? Why! Why are we like this?The whole world is advancing , yet people here are stuck with this kind of “extract dowry” mentality. :(

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  1. February 10, 2014

    […] been a social evil that has been around for a long time but where did it start and much more try Dowry? What dowry?, Stop bidding start choosing and Muslim wedding […]

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