In our Indian society there are numerous problems like superstitions, illiteracy, cast system and dowry system, etc. It is surprising that even in these days of the 21th century, we are still drowned in the dark depth of these evils. Dowry is a form of consideration in cash or otherwise demanded by the groom or his relatives in return for marring the to be bride.
The history of dowry in South Asia is not clear. Some scholars believe dowry was practiced in antiquity, but some do not.
Historical eyewitness reports, as discussed below, suggest dowry in ancient India was insignificant, and daughters had inheritance rights, which by custom were exercised at the time of their marriage.
Documentary evidence suggests that at the beginning of 20th century bride price, rather than dowry was the common custom, which often resulted in very poor boys remaining unmarried.
Tambiah claims the ancient Code of Manu sanctioned dowry and bridewealth in ancient India, but dowry was the more prestigious form and associated with the Brahmanic priestly caste. Bridewealth was restricted to the lower casteswho were not allowed to give dowry.
He cites two studies from the early 20th century with data to suggest that this pattern of dowry in upper castes and bridewealth in lower castes has persisted through the first half of the 20th century. The findings of MacDonell and Keith are similar to Witzel, and differ from Tambiah; they cite ancient Indian literature suggesting bridewealth was paid even in brahma - and daiva -types of marriage associated with the Brahmanic priestly upper caste.
Dowry was not infrequent when the girl suffered from some bodily defect. Lochtefeld suggests that religious duties listed by Manu and others, such as 'the bride be richly adorned to celebrate marriage' were ceremonial dress and jewelry along with gifts that were her property, not property demanded by or meant for the groom; Lochtefeld further notes that bridal adornment is not currently considered as dowry in most people's mind.
Available eyewitness observations from ancient India give a different picture.
One of these are the eyewitness records from Alexander the Great conquest ca. Arrian first book mentions a lack of dowry, They these ancient Indian people make their marriages accordance with this principle, for in selecting a bride they care nothing whether she has a dowry and a handsome fortune, but look only to her beauty and other advantages of the outward person.
ArrianThe Invasion of India by Alexander the Great3rd Century BC  Arrian's second book similarly notes, They Indians marry without either giving or taking dowries, but the women as soon as they are marriageable are brought forward by their fathers in public, to be selected by the victor in wrestling or boxing or running or someone who excels in any other manly exercise.
He translated many Indian texts into Arabicas well as wrote a memoir on Indian culture and life he observed. Al-Biruni claimed, The implements of the wedding rejoicings are brought forward. No gift dower or dowry is settled between them. The man gives only a present to the wife, as he thinks fit, and a marriage gift in advance, which he has no right to claim back, but the proposed wife may give it back to him of her own will if she does not want to marry.
The daughter took this inheritance amount with her when she married, claimed Al-Biruni, and she had no rights to income from her parents after her marriage or to any additional inheritance after her father's death.
If her father died before her marriage, her guardian would first pay off her father's debt, then allocate a fourth of the remaining wealth to her upkeep till she is ready to marry, and then give the rest to her to take with her into her married life. It is also unclear when, why and how quickly the practice of dowry demand by grooms began, whether this happened after the arrival of Islam in the late 11th century, or with the arrival of colonialism in the 16th century, or both.
Causes of the dowry[ edit ] Various reasons have been suggested as cause of dowry practice in India.
These include economic factors and social factors. Economic factors[ edit ] There are many economic factors that contribute towards the system of dowry.
Some of these include inheritance systems and the bride's economic status. Some suggestions point to economics and weak legal institutions on inheritance place women in disadvantage, with inheritances being left only to sons. InIndia gave equal legal status to daughters and sons among HinduSikh and Jain families, under the Hindu Succession Act India grants its Muslim population the Sharia derived personal status laws.
Despite the new inheritance law, dowry has continued as a process whereby parental property is distributed to a daughter at her marriage by a social process, rather than after parents death by a slow court supervised process under Hindu Succession Act This helped prevent family wealth break-up and provided security to the bride at the same time.It has hence taken an ugly turn, many parts of India still have a high incidence of dowry demands.
Some states with a very poor reputation with regards to dowry are. b) To conceptualize modern day consequences of dowry system. c) To refer to various laws in India and find out reasons for ineffectuality. d) To analyze the trend lay down in this regard by way of various judicial decisions.
Dowry system in India From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search This article may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia's quality standards. While the dowry system still exists in India today, The blowout of the dowry system forced the government to take action in the Free Online Courses for.
Short Essay on Dowry System in India: In our Indian society there are numerous problems like superstitions, illiteracy, cast system and dowry system etc. It is surprising that in these days of the 20th century even, we are still drowned in the dark depth of these evils. Short Essay on Dowry System in India: It is a custom that is prevalent in all the sections of our society in one form or the Essay; Essay on Dowry System.
This free Sociology essay on Essay: Dowry is perfect for Sociology students to use as an example. but the custom of dowry is still strongly adopted.