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Dowry system a curse on Indian society

New Delhi, Thu, 12 Jul 2007 Pallavi Sharma

Untitled Document

July 12: Since British rule till date efforts are being put to root out one draconian evil from Indian society that is dowry system but inspite of huge efforts cornered, evil persists in all its aspects everywhere in country. Problem is no more confined to one or two states or north Indian states but gained roots in the soil of Southern as well as Eastern states too.

Problematic part is that it made its way to all sections, classes, castes, societies and communities. It permeated even to tribal societies known for primitive egalitarianism and gender equality and to Muslim community too.

Strong legislation, laws and women’s movements, every attempt to resist it has been thwarted by the wide social sanction accorded to this illegal practice.

Roots of dowry date back to the time when man started living a civilized life. Originally it intended just to give a support and security to new couple who start their married life. It also signified an alternative to inheritance for woman. In periods of time it distorted its face and but its worst face comes to the fore in present society where parents pass their whole life under debt to pay dowry in the marriages of their daughters which also results in murders and suicides of the daughters. Rising dowry death toll in recent years reflects the grimness of the problem.

Reasons behind huge dowry demands are counted by experts mainly the lack of economic rights of woman, denial of property rights and basic civil rights such as right of marriage of own choice, land rights and education.

Social mental set up also works behind it such as in Indian society girls are considered a liability while boys as assets. Culturally sons are preferred. This accords a secondary social status to women. Nalini singh says that woman has ‘zero political status’ in family. They are considered of less productive value than man so dowry is considered to be a compensation for that ‘worth deficiency’.

Several surveys reveal that dowry cases have risen drastically within last 10 to 15 years. It is considered that dowry system was facilitated by economic liberalization. Sudden rise in dowry cases is also linked to the rising consumerist culture and according to the report of AIDWA, the natural tendency of human to have easy access to the consumer goods which was prompted by the varied choices of consumer goods available in the market. Heightened incidents of dowry can be attributed to the changing economic structure of society consequent social polarization.

Dowry is not the only problem of Indian society, attached to it is the whole bunch of corresponding evils. International women’s conference in Australia accepted that female foeticide is directly related to dowry. Middle and lower middle income groups who are not able to fulfill the demand of dowry think it wise to nip in the bud. Domestic violence is another consequence of this evil.

This colossal problem persists even after centuries, is mainly because stringent laws alone can not bring change at level of mentality of people for that mass movement needs to be initiated. Mass awareness is to be created. Hundreds of dowry deaths are closed as just kitchen accidents or suicides. Around 40 percent women married happen to be below eighteen years of age and illiterate thus not in position to assert themselves. Their voice remains unheard in society.

Lack of political participation due to social-economic constraints is another reason why woman has not been able to assert herself and protect against this evil. This is also considered the failure of male- oriented polity by some experts. Due to all these disadvantageous position of woman, we fail to solve this problem even after all attention and focus on it.

Women’s education and enhanced participation in political process, position in decision-making bodies will improve the situation. They need to be provided with shield of protection which should not be blunt like present laws but razor sharp that could really help them and prevent them from taking such extreme steps as taken by Pooja Chauhan of Rajkot.

Read More: Rajkot

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kanhaiya kumar choudhary

October 10, 2012 at 10:32 PM

I don't think so that it is bed .because it is rule of marriage.it sows always what is your status in your society . as I think it is good for our society.

Suresh Chandra Kushwaha

January 31, 2012 at 5:36 PM

Whenever man went far from literature, cultural and spiritual values and nature, he went far from humanity. Today's man may be said mere a store of some information and a rupee printing machine and nothing else. None has time to spare on reading good books, thoughts and participating in debates, seminars etc. on social topics and in general having conversation of social issues. Literature is the mirror of society, but this mirror, now-a-days is dusty. So how can be see our right face. So please return to self study of good books and literature and do good for society.

Suresh Chandra Kushwaha

January 31, 2012 at 5:24 PM

Whenever men went far from literature, cultural and spiritual values and nature they went to their mental downfall. Though there is technically highly educated crowd in the world, there is little to think of nature and humanity. Today man is mere a store of some information like internet and a rupee printing machine and the result is to see. If we devote our little valuable time to holy literature and think for a while, no such problems would prevail. So please do some well to protect society.

Harsh patel

August 26, 2008 at 12:00 AM

i just want to say that any person who follow such system, we should kill such people as they are lacking us in our society. some times people say that India is lacking behind so you can understand that such system can be taken a global issue so we should ourselves understand such problem. so take care about it.


July 29, 2008 at 12:00 AM

only one comment..dowry system should be abolished..the term dowry should be taken of from the minds of indian people

Lovish Singla Hissar

June 24, 2008 at 12:00 AM

Dowry system is worst as due to people take lot of money and after 1 or 2 years they again want more money.Due to dowry system daughters had became a heavy load on their parents.Anybody don't want a girl as a child.I hope after reading this message people would wake up against dowry system.

Puneet Garg

June 24, 2008 at 12:00 AM

dowry system is bad as due to it people kill daughters in mothers womb.Some strict actions must be taken to stop it.I know that making check that wheather the child is male or female is illegal but still people are doing this by giving money to doctors.I again want to say that some strict actons must be taken against it.


October 11, 2007 at 12:00 AM

No laws can be of help unless the individual mind set changes. Individual themselves should make up their mind not to give or take dowry.
This way we can very well make dowry a bygone word in history.
An example for this is the initiative made by the online matrimonial portal www.idontwantdowry.com
The portal promotes only dowry free marriages ireespective of caste, creed and community.
The portal also organizes Swayamvaram's for those ideal brides and grooms who cannot access the net.
I strongly hope such moves will inculcate youths mind get married without dowry.


July 25, 2007 at 12:00 AM

No doubt awareness is needed, but i feel enough have been said about the status of women and associated issues. what is the need od the hour is writes up and awareness about what to be done to bring them out of the existing mess.


July 15, 2007 at 12:00 AM

The above article reveals the bitter truth of the present evil dowry system. Mass awareness is what required totally to eradicate this evil from the society.

Site like www.idontwantdowry.com which registers youths against dowry system is a welcoming move to create a dowry free society.

Brides and Grooms can find their ideal life mates in the site who are aginst the dowry culture, in the matrimony site which has been created for a social cause, apart from being commercial.



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