Sameer ul Islam
Dowry is basically the cash, jewellery, furniture, prosperity and other tangible items given by the bride’s family to the bridegroom and his parents during the event of marriage and this is called dowry system. It has been prevalent in India since centuries. Dowry system that initiated as a decent practice to help the girl financially as they took on the new phase of their life has gradually turned evil.
We don’t find any instances of dowry related violence in the literature of ancient times. Not even in the literature belonging to the pre-colonial era of India. The move which affected the status of the woman in the Indian society was the rule imposed by the British which prohibited the woman from owning any property at all! It meant that all the wealth that a woman got from her parents would be owned by her husband instead. And the moment of this system of husband owning the wealth of his wife was created the traditional dowry system got converted into a menace creating an institution of greed that oppressed, victimised and suppressed woman. Dowry can be termed as a curse to the society especially to the woman.
“If I don’t kill her today; tomorrow she will kill me financially or someone else will burn her for the sake of dowry,” rationalizes the would be father of an unborn female child, at the time of deciding a premature end for her. Such is the evil of dowry, rampantly prevailing in Indian society. A study has revealed that an estimated one million (1,000,000) female foetuses are being aborted every year in India alone where, even today the birth of a female child is viewed as a curse. As soon as a daughter is born, the family in general and the father in particular starts calculating the huge financial burden that lies ahead of him. Whereas a Muslim father seizes, the same opportunity with both his hands as his Prophet (PBUH) has promised him heaven for bringing up his daughter the way he takes care of his male child.
A Muslim father does not have to bother for dowry, as there is nothing called ‘Dowry’ in Islam. On the contrary, Islam enjoins the groom to give a ‘Bridal-Gift’ or ‘Dower’ as a token of love and assurance to his would be wife at the time of marriage. In fact without payment of this sum, the marriage cannot get solemnized. The Holy Qur’an instructs the believers “And give the women (whom you marry) their dower (obligatory bridal gift) happily”
Here are some of the main reasons why the dowry system remains intact despite being condemned by the masses.
In the name of tradition
Lack of strict laws
Dowry system is the cause of agony for the girl and her family. The Government and general public must join hands to eradicate this system
O- of the order
W-who can’t stand on their own feet
R-rely on their wives riches
Be a man, not beggar to ask dowry
The writer is the student of B.Sc and can be reached at [email protected]