How many Indian guys here have not asked for a dowry, and what were your reasons?
Krishna Kumar, Principal Software Engineer at Nokia (2014-present)
Mine was an arranged marriage and I too did not take any dowry.
Usually when the girl's parents decide to go ahead, they talk with the Guy's parents and see what all need to be done. This would include the rituals and most importantly what do you expect in terms of money/gold/movable/immovable and what what they can do. I took up the initiative and told everybody in the group that I dont want anything. I also requested everybody not to talk about this. The girl's parents were adamant but I put my foot down and told them I do not want to hear this. My Mom and Dad also supported me and asked my in-laws to not think about all this.
I also told them that we will share the marriage expenses. Usually the bride side is the one who take care of all the expenses. They told me they want to take care of that fully as they have already planned for it. So I presented my side of the expenses as an investment towards the bride. That way she can use it when she wants to for whatever purposes she wants to (she actually wants to build a art studio with it in the future). After marriage, I was talking to my wifey and she told me, this single step of mine had etched a great impression of me on her. They are from a middle class background and my wifey saved 3-4 years of her income for her marriage expenses. She knows the value of money. When she too saw me contributing for the marriage she felt good. Even my inlaws felt good. A great foundation for a life time relationship made... with simple open minded steps like these.
We are now happily married and have a 2 year old brat. Both of us respect each other and fully believe in each other.
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I come from one of the most popular community known for giving and taking dowry. My sister faced loads of problem because of the dowry thing. She has been married for 20 years now. Still the demands are as it is. My dad spent close to 25 lac in her marriage and the demands never stopped. Extorting money from dad on one or other way was very common for my sister’s inlaws. imagine the ordeal that even after 15 years of marriage my brother in law borrowed 20 lacs from my dad and never returned and my dad never asked for the money. I was a silent spectator of this and decided that I will never accept a single penny in dowry or the old day extortion.
Moved back to India from UK post my studies and couple of work experience after my dad passed away. I went for an arrange marriage again arranged my sister;s inlaws family. The greed was high on their heads and the bomb was exploded when I declared that I am not taking or accepting any dowry. My brother in law handed me a list of gifts which he expected from marriage including a car for himself(I know this was the limit).
Anyways, the marriage happened. I spent a fortune on the marriage. All expenses were shared by me even for the dinner hosted by girl’s family. Din’t took anything from bride’s family except one ring and watch(normal non branded ones - total worth below 10k Rs).
Plot Twist: I was slammed dowry case and extorted close to 1 cr by my wife and her bf, she stole all the jewellery and valuables from my house including my Mom’s You guessed it right my brother in law had a share in it.
I won the case of dowry though I spent 3 days behind bars (it’s a non bailable offence). But I was asked to pay over 30 lacs to her as maintenance after 4 years of legal battle. The amount was decided based on my current earnings. I had paid 25 lacs and will be paying remaining 5 on Aug 10.
PS: She stole jewellery worth 55 lacs, 4.5 lacs cash, valuable items like watches, cameras, 2 phones, few of my personal items within a month of marriage and eloped with her bf. Case was slammed on me even before I could realized where did she go.
My ideology was slapped right on my face.
Lesson learnt: It’s the people not the customs that are corrupt.
Aparna Gopakumar, Blissfully married
When my marriage was fixed, my dad asked the groom's parents about what did they want. Being from an educated family, I was shocked to witness that and protested.
My mom hushed me.
Dad wanted to buy a flat for us to live after wedding. I was seething inside about this idea. Even though he's buying something for me, it had the tag of 'dowry'. But thankfully my future in-laws turned it down as they had already found a flat to buy. (My dad,living in another state of India, would've to shuttle few times for everything).
I was impressed. I had believed they will demand something. But instead they bought a flat for us. Dad, undeterred, asked my would-be whether he would like to have a car. He politely declined stating he already has a car. I teased him this was the chance and he could have got an Audi/Jaguar but he rejected.
Post this, I had a discussion with my parents, telling they shouldn't have asked them in the first place. The sad reality is, no matter how progressive we believe we are, we still follow caste, horoscope matching, family pedigree and dowry when it comes to arranged marriage. No dowry is a step forward. Hopefully in coming years, the other 'traditions' like this will be casted off.
Deepak Vishwakarma, Happily married
I got married almost 6 years back. It was an arranged marriage.
I am a software engineer and my wife has studied till 8th standard only (and I am not ashamed of her).
My would be in-laws were worried because only few days were remaining for marriage and we had not asked for any dowry or gift yet. They were worried that we will ask for dowry from them on the day of marriage and if they would not be able to arrange money for it we would call off the marriage.
Just 3 days before marriage my would be brother in law called me and asked "Like every one you certainly must be having some wishes, can you please tell us so that we can arrange it for you".
I said "No I don't have any wishes and I don't want any thing".
He was surprised but still asked me "What is your favourite colour, you don't want anything but we still want to gift you a bike".
I said "No, I really don't want anything. And kindly don't waste your money on a bike, I even don't know how to ride one".
He kept on insisting and I had to tell them my favourite colour.
They really gifted me a bike which is lying uselessly in my home since last 6 years however my brother use it once in a while.
I did not ask for dowry because I have three sisters and I know how much difficult it is to find a decent family for them (who don't want any dowry).
Pawan Samanthri, Family means everything !!
Let me tell you my story !! Mine was arranged marriage and her parents came to my place 3 days before our engagement to know if we had any demands that they have to take care of. My dad looked at me since this discussion was already done within my family.
I told that everything is perfect between our families and bringing up this matter would ruin all of it. It would be dumb to ask for 3-4 lakhs worth of gold or cash which would be my 4-5 month salary !!! We mentioned that dowry thing was unnecessary and what they wanted to give their daughter was also none of our business to interfere in. I was happy that my mom and dad supported me in this.
I did end up getting 54 kgs of gold ( my pretty wifey !! ) and well till date the journey has been beautiful, I guess the bonding between families is lot more worth it than the gold or cash.
Most of all any girl would want to look up to a person with respect, whom she is going to marry and as guys it is up to us not to let them down !! they may be helpless and may not say anything because of shitty society but as literates guys should understand and work towards building a better society without DOWRY !!
我说我们两家之间都很完美，非要提嫁妆就会毁了这一切。索要30 - 40万卢比的黄金或现金（价值我4-5个月工资），太愚蠢了!!我们说嫁妆没必要，他们想给他们的女儿什么，也跟我没关系。我很高兴我的父母在这件事上很支持我。
I am an Indian guy and I have not asked for any dowry when I married almost 3 decades back.
I married at a slightly late age of 34 due to personal reasons, and placed an ad in the Hindu seeking a bride. I was not very particular about caste, (though I must concede that I am married to a girl from the same caste, but I can assure you that my choice was in no way influenced by the caste factor) and then had an arranged marriage in a traditional way with the full participation of both our families and friends. During my very first meeting with the girl's parents, I had made it clear that I am not at all interested in dowry, and stuck to my stand throughout.
Reason: I honestly believed asking for or taking dowry is wrong. As simple as that. I remember telling my future mother in law at the very first meeting that I was looking for a life partner, and not a business partner.
PS: Ironically though, parents of many prospective brides became skeptical and even started suspecting my integrity, employment details, family background etc. just because I was not interested in dowry. Such was the prevalence of dowry practice in India even just three decades back.
I didn't ask for dowry and neither accepted any gifts from my in-laws (despite societal pressure). During my marriage, though we did exchange the necessary ritualistic token money (neg), but that token money amount depended upon the discretion of the giver. We didn't demand or set any minimal threshold amount for such 'neg'.
1.Mine was a love marriage. For me, my wife is the essential wealth that my in-laws gifted to me. She's gem of a person, kind, caring, considerate. I believe that if she's with me, I can gather enough wealth to fulfill my future responsibilities.
2.During my relationship, I had promised her that I wouldn't take dowry. So, me asking dowry would have been breaking my promise. Also, one of the reasons my wife fell in love with me was my love for moral values and my attempts to abide by them. Me taking dowry would have shown that I was essentially a hypocrite which I desperately try not to be.
3.My parents are awesome and they supported my decision. They themselves are against dowry system and they also didn't take any gifts from my in-laws. Though they faced stiff resistance from other people around us, but still they didn't budge.
4.My FIL has been working hard to fulfill the dreams of his children. As a sole earning member of the family, he has been performing his duties responsibly as a son, husband and a father. And that too while earning only modestly. I know how hard it's to earn money, and keeping myself in his position made me realize that how much cruel I could be if I were to ask dowry from him. As he was against our relationship, me not taking dowry contributed to a better relationship between him and me.
Rashmi Salokhe, Say no to dowry
Contrary to popular beliefs, my husband did not ask for dowry. Denied and fought against in fact.
Ours was mutual arranged marriage. Though we met through matrimony site and parents choice, it was instant click. But somehow I wanted to be really sure. He respected that and gave me time. We met for 3 months straight before deciding anything and then took it to our parents. (Uncommon in arranged marriages where groom sees bride at her home only once and marriage is decided)
When discussions took place, him and his family insisted on simple court marriage and reception with splitting all expenses. We happily admitted as we too wanted to go for court marriage.
Him and his family lifted hugh burden off me and my parents. My wedding was so simple, so quite, just few signs and we are done. I cannot tell you how relieved I'm to be saved from a torturous day of wedding rituals. Court marriage followed by simple, sweet reception and we were done. I felt enthusiastic rather than tired at the end of the day. He is amazing..
Question asks about reasons. Well his reasons being he thinks spending fortune on weddings is waste. Also he invested that money in decorating house for me (it was awesome surprise). He also spent a lot on honeymoon which he saved on wedding. It was best time of my life.
By simple gesture of not accepting dowry, car, bike, furniture, jewelry etc my husband has won my heart and my family's respect.
Abubacker Siddique, Physical Design Engineer at Microchip Technology
I am not married yet but let me share my views.
I won't ask for a dowry to my better half's family. It doesn't mean that they can't afford for the sake of their lovely daughter. After all, for every parent their daughter is their precious gift :D Okay !! Coming to the point : Why should they have to give dowry to you ?
Just think about the wedding night where she just stands in front of a person, her husband now whom is still a complete stranger to her. She doesn't know about him completely so yet, eventhow if she knew him for 2 months in courtship period.
She stands because she trusts us blindly. Yet we seek dowry (addressing to the entire men class).
It's difficult for a girl in this world to leave her parents (especially mom), but she has to leave all of sudden in fraction of seconds. No one can bare this sudden transition.
She has no choice other then quitting her parents. She has to adapt herself to the new family atmosphere.
Are we (boys) undergoing any such transition in our life. Yet we ask for a dowry !!!
She is the one who extends our family tree. Do you know ?? that she has to undergo a pain of pregnancy which is not even equivalent to the breaking of 1000 bones at a stroke. Can u ask for dowry for bearing that pain?
Don’t you think that we are the one who should give dowry?
On the contrary, I will get dowry from my better half :P But my dowry doesn't include any 2BHK flat, car, (100*8) grams gold blah blah .....
Mine will be the her good qualities and trust that she is going to have toward me forever .
Kandarp Joshi, B-pharmacy from Pune, Maharashtra, India (2010)
One of my colleagues took a very nice step to teach lesson to his community. I am not mentioning names over here as it is a matter of privacy. He is from a community where dowry is very common. His parents gave a list of items to be given as a dowry to his in-laws before his marriage. He was strictly against dowry but everybody threatened him that "if he will interfere in this matter he will not be allowed to marry that girl". He liked the girl so much that he didn't want to loose her. So to avoid accepting dowry, before two days of arranged date of marriage he married the same girl in court.
He also informed the police about the dowry demands of his own family. The police gave warning to his family and community not to take dowry in future and also asked this friend of mine to inform them if he found anyone doing so.
Three years have passed now. He has formed a group in his village who keeps watch on this dowry system. If anyone is caught giving or accepting dowry they inform police immediately. They also organise street plays.
Pradeep Rao, Indian by birth and Indian by thought!!
This is the routine conversation between me and my parents for the last one year, mostly over phone!!
Dad: Why don't you want to see that girl X, she is well educated and from a well settled family!!
Me: Okay, ask her to send me a friend request or ping me on WhatsApp!!
Dad: No, you know that it doesn't work that way, we have to go see the girl at her home!!
Me: No dad, I don't like it. I don't want to take their hospitality and say NO for any reasons. It is embarrassing for her and me as well.
Mom: When do you want to get married son?? It is time, isn't it?? ( I am 26, not convinced with this argument yet!! )You won't get prospects later and there are not too many girls in our near relatives (or Caste specifically).
Me: (playfully) when I find a better girl and dad agrees to no dowry ;)
Mom: Not again!! He is only thinking for your future!!
Son: Do you guys think I can't make money myself??
Mom: No, but girls do have a right to share parents properties like boys do know?? ( twist in the tale these days )
Me: Mom did you have breakfast?? What are you planning for lunch??
( she will be carried away )
I'm not sure how long I can hold this:) I'm going to take a break from work and going for masters.. So it might continue for another two years. I'm serious about not taking dowry. Its going to be tough given the circumstances that the amount of dowry and the grandeur of the marriage is going to decide the worth and reputation of groom and his family :)
我跟爸爸* * * * * * * * * * * *
我跟妈妈* * * * * * * * * * * *