The residents of Piraila village located in Siddhartnagar district of Uttar Pradesh, are taking every possible step to ensure that the evil practice of dowry is completely eliminated from the village. They have pledged to shun dowry in all its forms and have come up with a unanimous decision to do so.
The registered village samiti, Anjuman Raza-e-Mustafa initiated the pledge and the locals have decided to boycott any family that gives or takes dowry in any way.
Picture for representation only. Source: Abhinay Omkar/Flickr
They have also decided to reduce the amount of money spent on wedding ceremonies because the extravagance is also a part of dowry demands in some cases.
Anwarullah, manager of the village samiti told The Times of India that anyone who gives or takes dowry or spends extravagantly on weddings will be treated like an outcast. No one will come to their aid even in times of crisis.
The decision was taken after the villagers realised that dowry is one of the biggest social evils in the country, and it even leads to several deaths. According to this report, 24,771 dowry deaths were reported in the country in 2012, 2013 and 2014. And a maximum of them, 7,048 deaths, were reported from Uttar Pradesh.
“There is a lot of buzz about Beti Bachao Beti Padhao. Once the issue of girl child survival was being discussed in our village and everyone blamed dowry for the mindset that saw women as a burden on society. The decision was taken to eliminate the problem from its roots,” said a resident of the village, which consists of 120 Muslim families and 80 Hindu families.
Another member of the samiti added that many families start feeling the burden of dowry right from the time when a daughter is born. And with that thought, they pay less attention to the education of the girl. Some even make their daughters quit school after a few years because of financial reasons, and they openly claim that they are saving for her wedding, which is a matter of respect for the family. Some school dropouts are even married before the legal age.
With this decision to shun dowry once and for all, parents might be relieved of the stress and they can concentrate on the development of their child instead.