Honourable Principal, Respected Teachers and my dear friends.
Today I, Monika, would like to express my views on the ‘Evils of Dowry System’. India is a patriarchal society and many evil practices against women, such as female foeticide, early marriage, etc. are prevalent even now. One such practice is Dowry System, which has claimed lives of many innocent women since time immemorial.
Dowry System came into practice in the vedic period when upper caste people presented the bridegroom with dowry. It was to support the girl since she did not inherit anything under Hindu Law. As times passed, the practice, which was to benefit the bride, became a social evil.
Dowry System allows a variety of crimes to take place every day. Women are tortured mentally and physically. They have to face humiliation, threats and more often than not, become hostage in the house of their in-laws. Most common dowry crimes are dowry deaths, either by suicide or murder, domestic violence, marital rape, sexual harassment, etc.
Although, government of India has recognised dowry as a crime and has established various laws against it, they have been found ineffective. Laws alone are insufficient to completely prohibit Dowry System. Awareness and education is also extremely necessary. Until and unless, women have financial security and equal rights in the society, they cannot live with dignity. They also deserve equal job opportunities with pay equal to what men are paid.
Every aspect of life is incomplete without women. Those who torment and torture women for dowry must not be treated with sympathy. We all must unite against the evil of Dowry System and make our country a safe place for women.