Monday, July 2, 2007

Dowri: A Modern Outlook

When I hear about arranged proposals and marriage , I think about the dowry too. It is still in place. Its that low class and lower upper class make open deals about dowry where as middle class and upper middle class are too decent to ask dowry. That doesn’t mean dowry doesn’t exist.
If the girl is uneducated, she got to give dowry. (bcoz she dint study. Whether the boy she is going to marry have studied or not is irrelevant). Even if the girl is educated,.. case is not different. This time she needs to give dowry get a good qualified gentlemen, according to her qualification).

Well you cant blame gents either. If he asks dowry, then he is an uncivilized money minded coward. If you don’t ask, then seriously something is wrong with him.
Here I am trying to share two of MY OWN experience I had to face, when I was undergoing the emotional torture of finding the right Guy. I was above the marriageable age (in my family, girls marry before 21). So my marriage has been a talk in the family, and tension of my dad. (I doubt, he started getting more white hairs after they started searching a boy for me).
Just sharing two incidences the first one is when the Boys father, makes an open request for dowry-decently and indirectly.
(Though Below mentioned situations are very true. No offense meant to anyone please)

Scene 1
Place: My homes, to be exact our living room.
Participants: Him (a well qualified professional in Bangalore) and Me
(The elders were too generous and understanding that they wanted us to know each other in the 5 min allowed.cant blame.. what else can they do.. when I cudnt find one on my own)
And awkward silence in the room. I was told that the guy should start the conversation. I wait for him to start. Atlast he said after a long silence
Me: *smile*
Him: err…what is your name? (couldn’t hear what he said.)
Me: What?!????!!? (doubting if it’s the problem with my ears or with his voice)
Him: rr…. Your name is Beena, right? (funny. Without knowing you have come all the way traveling 5 hours to meet somebody whose name itself unknown. Maybe it’s the starting trouble)
Me: yes.. and you are XXXX right (hey. C’mon. I too talk blunders)
Him: err…what you doing?
Me: What?!??!!??? (again problem with he volume, forget bass)
Him: *gulp* err…hmmmm….I mean you are working in bangalore right
Me: yes yes.. (great this time I heard him).
Him: %^&*t6^&… (3 min over)
Him: you want to say something.
Me: *smile* No. (I knew I never want to know him more. 5 min is more than enough)
Him: errr…hmmm…err… well then
Me: *hmmm*

5 min later.
Guys father says bye. He makes sure his car is full with kappa, kaachikka, kurumulaku, elakka, kaappi kuru, ethakka, elakka etc from our land. Neighbour Chedathi was looking as if a long lost relative has come to see us. In the town, where they stay, these kind of things (above mentioned ones) are not good it seems (very true). Since his childhood, he rarely got to see the home cultivated vegetables.
Me: No wonder that’s why you showing this ‘aakrantham
Hey. I dint say that. But I wished I could.
Guys father continued, “anyway nothing to hide between us now. I had given XXXX lakhs and XXX gold for my daughter. Blah blah blah"
My father: *gulp* err *smiles* err. I am glad my father dint faint
Well it dint work out.. how it can..
* end of scene 1 *

Scene 2

This time it’s not the father who is intelligent, but the son himself. He was trying to figure out how much he can get. (yes.. ofcourse he dint ask it directly)
Place: the same living room with the same furniture.
Participants: Him (this time it’s an IT Guy working in USA. On short leave, who wants to find his soul mate in a week or two) and Me.
Me: *smile* ( am used to this one)
Him: Beena, heard you work for Jubilant as a Scientist. That’s good. How’s the job?
Me: *wow*?!?!!? (direct and smart) ya ..Job is good. Infact I got few opportunities in other companies , but I dint want to change for the time being. Good career you see. (what a sweet lier I am)
Him: *smiles* (looked happy) so how do you go to office. By your car or they provide vehicle. I know all girls use two-wheeler still...
Me: *confused on the relevancy of vehicle I use*. No no.. I go by BMTC bus. (Cabs were not provided then. Buying a car was still a dream)
Him: *disappointed face* err…well. Then where do u stay. U have taken your own apartment or..???? ended in an uncertainty.
Me: No, No.. I stay in a hostel. Its very economic. I pay around Rs XXXX/-
Him: *with a very dull face as if he lost in his 10th examination but trying to keep a fake smile * well. Then.. umm. Err.. u na’. So what do you do with the money you earn. Might be investing in some share market or something
Me: What?!?!!??? Savings!!!!
Him: *gulp* err…hmmmm….He was shocked and was looking white as if he had seen a dead body talking.. well, Beena anything else you want to ask..??
Me: No NO.. (I could read his mind).
Him: %4$%^&^&* (He got up. Mother came and talked with him. Dunno how much of his errr…hmmm…err… well then Englishi Malayalam she could get understand)
Him: errr…hmmm…err… well.. aunty, where is the wash room?
Before my mother showed him the wash basin (bcoz she would no way understand his language), I guided him to the right place.

* the end of scene 2 *

Fortunately both didn’t have the chance to proceed.
After all you cant blame anybody. You get the deal; it’s a business for years. After dowry also, he can get incentives every time he visits her house. He doesn’t have to bother about the furniture, house hold items.. Everything done at pocket money given by FIL.
Dowry is a kind of smart business… I say. (but the money stinks)

Anybody against Dowry?
This Gold mine Image from somewhere in the Net.


Nepali Akash said...

Him:Might be investing in some share market or something

Me: What?!?!!??? Savings!!!!

That was funny !! haha

I wonder how girls can feel secure about her life after knowing that her husband asked dowry from her parents. Yea, some may say, its the custom or that it was his his parents who asked dowry but not him. But hey, thats an excuse. If a guy seriously doesn't want a dowry, he wont accept it. Parents are just lame excuses.
And beena, hope u get the right guy with no objective is dowry shit in his resume. Good luck !!!

Prajwol said...

The bride in the picture looks more Mannequin and less Human.

Beena, thanks for sharing your experience, I'm sorry both instances couldn't work out but I guess that was blessing in disguise. I still can't understand how can someone get dowry and girl at the same time? I know it sounds insane but logically paying dowry to get a girl seems more relevant. Anyways, both practice are wrong.

Best wishes to you and good luck.

Beena said...

N Akash & Prajwol:

"And beena, hope u get the right guy with no objective is dowry shit in his resume. Good luck !!!"
"Best wishes to you and good luck."

That was more funny!! hahaha

Already I got the right Guy. He was not into Dowry or atleast he was more smart in convincing me that he is not a person who goes for Dowry.

I return the GOOD LUCK to u, when u seek ur soul mate. :)

(and Guess what this is going to the best best birthday joke I can tell my husband along with the Birthday wish)

But its true that I cant accept somebody who asked Dowry. not only me, any girl would be same

Prajwol said...

Give my wishes to your hubby for his birthday. Not only girls, guy's like me hate dowry too, sometimes the girls family are seen to give too much even without anyone ever asking. This situation can't technically be said dowry but certainly a promoter of dowry system.

Vikram said...

Hey Beena,

Nice post. You should post more about your experiences like this. I'd be very interested. My wife and I had the smallest, coziest marriage, with no dowry, no ten-day celebration: just close family. Since I missed out on the arranged marriage, I am keen to know what people's experiences are like.

I'm a card carrying member of "Indians against dowry".

Keep writing.

Heather said...

Hi Beena I have been reading your Blog with great interest. I would just like to thank you for your support and encouragement over the last few weeks. It is lovely to know that you are there.

alex said...
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alex said...


some marriages have dowries implicit in them..some explicitly..some none...very few dont...

Supernova said...

Hey beena, dat a quiet a good read:) Esp dos 2 scenes though im sure it must've been quiet a pain bearing dem.
Just to add regarding the pic, the bride is daughter of Dawood Ibrahim getting married to son of Pakistani cricketer.....(I forgot his name)

Anonymous said...

for my marriage, which in all likelihood is a good 5 yrs away, i plan to fund it from my pocket :-). and wont accept any dowry. here is the problem though, dowry goes through as gifts, and its hard to refuse gifts. ideally id like to refuse gifts too, but that would make me seem arrogant. its catch 22 situation

Sunil Nair said...
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Shiby said...

It is all about in which angle you see it. If a guy require money to run the rest of the story and the girl is ready to take the collective ownership with him in all area of the life, the proportional help from girls family as a contribution to the new coming family is not as bad as people think. But If one or both parties take advantage on each other, thing becomes nasty and that happens in all areas of life and must be stopped. This happens when you get aware of the negative energies like selfishness. If anybody require any help or advice on this, please feel free to consult me at You are most welcome.

Ashish said...

Marriage is a big market. From my experience, I will say that parents start thinking about this bussiness as the child is born. The sex of the child easily determines their role in the market.

Anitya said...

how come I was missing this great post.
like in bribes, both who gives and receives are responsible for this dowry.

yes, dowry sucks and fortunately it doesn't exist in our community.

I'm sure you got the best spouse; congrats! your hubby must be enjoying this special post, :p

Josekutty said...

Hope you don't feel bad.. But It was so funny. I remember when I last read Thomas pala's arangile amalikal...You got a good humour sense.. Keep it..

Sunil Nair said...

I have a question for guys: If marriage is important only for the girls, then why are guys eager to get married? If it’s not for the companionship and compassion in that relationship, and if you are getting married just for relieving someone of their so called burden, why do you want to do it? You can as well manage your living by employing others for all that a wife can do for you. Anyway, wife is a devil, mother-in-law is a villian, father-in-law is a dumbo, and marriage out an end to all happiness in your life..

And for girls, what’s the fun in dedicating your life’s happiness to someone who lacks self respect, who doesn’t know how to be honest in a relationship, and one who lacks confidence in himself? If robbing is a crime, is this not white collar robbing? If kidnapping and demanding a ransom is a crime, isn’t this similar to that?!! You despise crimals, look down upon beggars, and yet, are ready to share your life with someone no better than them!! You are expected to stay beautiful, to have no intelligence of your own(sad, buit that’s what guys like.. someone who’s obedient toooo reasonably), be a caretaker and a cook, be great in bed, have kids, bring them up properly, singlehandedly most of the times, do all this while you work and earn and still you are a burden, so your dad has to pay for that!!!

Well, marriage is not a service agreement, but an agreement of love and commitment. It’s a bridge between two families, acquainting strangers. Interlocking it with greed is simply SICK.
,dont kick me out :)

Srijith Unni said...

Hmm.. nicely written, beena.. and glad that you did get married..! lots of people (guys) dont like to ask dowry, but it`s society which spurns such questions..!

Anyway,, this is a neat blog.. Me first time in here.. Enjoyed reading your posts..!

With Best Regards,

Rodrigo said...

Oi, achei teu blog pelo google tá bem interessante gostei desse post. Quando der dá uma passada pelo meu blog, é sobre camisetas personalizadas, mostra passo a passo como criar uma camiseta personalizada bem maneira. Se você quiser linkar meu blog no seu eu ficaria agradecido, até mais e sucesso. (If you speak English can see the version in English of the Camiseta Personalizada. If he will be possible add my blog in your blogroll I thankful, bye friend).

Beena said...

Prajwol: am glad there are guys like you who don’t like dowry.
And of course ur wishes have reached my hubby

Vikram: looks like you had the kind of marriage, I was looking for. But then we had to see other things, others wish and we ended up in a marriage where most of the people invited were almost strangers to me.. though not to my family. But then its good that it’s a kind of re-union where you get to know who are your relatives are etc. that is also very important I feel

Heather: I wish I could help you more… to make you feel better

Alex: so which marriage are you going to have??

Supernova: thanks .. thanks for updating.. I was not sure whose kids were those Gold mines.

Shiby: I agree that a collective owner ship from girls side when THEY start a new life is fine. May be you ar etoo young to marry… and to young to understand these. (some)People take it as a bussiness where they can make money. Atleast I am happy there are many Guys who don’t prefer Dowri.
Readers please see the generous soul who is ready to give advice on something he is most unexperianced. But I am sure he will give it coz Advice is what you get free. Pls send him mail in that mentioned email, if u think you need free advice. (maye be you can give him advice too).
I think its no use to take advise about Dowri now… (sabu chayante chanz kazhinju mone):)

Ashish: I agree with you. I have a tamilian friend who said, she needs only one kid if the first kid is a girl and two if the first kids is a Boy. That’s the mindset of people and parents are worried from the time a baby girl is born.

Aniya: Rules are always there but no followers.
Ofcoure my husband enjoyed reading this post ( and he might be glad he dint ask any, or this might post would have been against him :)) jokes apart.. even he is against Dowri (he says so)

Josekutty: dint read “arangile amalikal”. May be I will read it sometime..
And thanks for the compliment (atho thamaasha adichathano?)

Sunil: it was worth posting it as a separate post.
Its true that marriage is an agreement on love, but its also true that many familes have strangers living under the same roof (for the sake of kids) and don’t worry nobody will kick you out.. this is India where you have freedom of expression and freedon of words

Srijith: thanks and keep reading my posts.
And of course even I am happy I am married :) to the right guy

Rodrigo: #$%^&*#$%^&*( this is what I could understand fom your coment) by the way which language is it?

infoguard said...

a Question for shiby.

read your comment and i have a doubt. answer me if possible.


wanderlust said...

hey, glad to know that after your experiences you got the right guy in your life.
i've gone through similar experiences and finally found someone on my own who was least bothered about what i would 'bring' with me.
we seem to have been blessed with a rare species of mallu guys :-)

Adi Crazy said...

awww....dont scare me even more! I have to go thru this arranged marriage stuff real soon now. *sad face* But hey, maybe I can share my experiences too! That shud b fun.
You write really well, sweeti! I m glad I came across ur blog :)

preethy said...

GOOD LORD!!!WHAT is she wearing around her neck??? i wonder if its symbolic...y'know a woman who pays dowry, has got 'chains' round her neck!!!

unni said...

Kudos.. beena...

aneri_masi said...

Girl, where did you get that picture from? That girl's seriously weighed down with some seriously ugly gold!!!

Dowry...yeah, rears its ugly head in various forms.

Some folks say "haaan, ladki achhi hai, to aur kya chahiye. But saath mein daan-dahej bhi mil jaaye to sone pe suhaga". Yuck!

Anonymous said...

Brim over I agree but I dream the list inform should prepare more info then it has.

Anonymous said...

interesting read. I would love to follow you on twitter.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...
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subha said...

Yesss honey,
I too agree with your talks. Bcoz i also had few experiences in this same way. I couldn't agree with marrying someone asking for such a big amount, but as usual most of the boys were asking for dowry, and i rejected them all. But atlast some one came , Who doesn't asked for any of this . Then i decided to marry him with enough gold and my father gave my share too in their hands. But from the first day of marriage he was demanding for money even for the travellling , so that means some of them never ask infront of every one, they just keep on planning their demands ,to be said after marriage . But what happened atlast , I gave divorse petition against him , and got free after a few months. So in my opinion this indian society never change . Also we cannot believe any one, even if they are well educated or not, from a good family or not. Whatever happens to a girls life after marriage is her fate, as always these girls will try to adjust herself , but if it doesn't works, she will go for divorse [or will end their lives by themselves or by the hand of her husband ]. THANK GOD I WAS LUCKY , BCOZ MY FAMILY WAS VERY SUPPORTIVE TO ME AS IF THEY DON'T WANT THEIR GIRL TO GET SUFFERED FROM A MAN WHO WAS FOUND OUT BY MY FAMILY ITSELF . Then the society is not going to leave her. They will blame that girl as, bcoz of her bad character only she is divorsed, even if she is innosent, they will seal her forehead as a flirt, prostitute, or sometimes they will claim that she got delivered before marriage itself and they didn't know. No one is going to seek the truth . They will just walks away. That's the present condition of our society, and it's not going to be changed even after 100 years, I 'm sure about that, so whatever happens , from my experience,I can tell you to just consider it as her fate, life will go on and on.........Only thing is girls must be brave to face any type of experiences in their life. [ ie. no more bhaaratha sthree than bhaava shudhy to this type of peoples].