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Keeping women financially dependent is an old patriarchal trick. Enough of this. You have no right to keep daughters powerless for your ‘honour’.
It’s been a few days after the Vismaya case. After seeing some of the video interviews with the people in her life, several things struck me.
What I can’t get my head around is the fact that this girl was given dowry worth 80 sovereigns of gold (approx Rs.30 lakh), a car worth Rs.10 lakh, and 1.25 acres of land (which couldn’t be transferred right away), and yet she didn’t have Rs.5000 in her own bank account to pay her exam fees. She had to ask her husband for it.
When he didn’t give it to her, she asked her mother for it. Surprise surprise, her mother didn’t have it on her either and asked her to get it from her husband himself. When Vismaya said he’s not giving it, the mother asked for a few days time to send her the Rs.5000.
Remember, her mother is a woman who must be in her early 50s, who has been a housewife all her life, yes, but is still the wife of a man who is wealthy, is the mother of his two grown children, yet even she did not have Rs.5000 in her own bank account to transfer to her daughter when she asked for it.
After 30 years of being a wife or 25 years of being a daughter, if you don’t have even Rs.5000 of cash in hand or in your bank account, what’s the point of all your ”wealth’, ‘privilege’, and ‘freedom’?
Everyone who says dowry is the rightful inheritance of the girl and that’s why she is given it at the time of her wedding has to think about this.
If it is the rightful inheritance of the girl, whether it is a car, a house/flat, land, or gold, then:
1) It has to be given to her and not him. It has to be in her name, in her bank account, in a locker that’s her’s. It belongs to her and not the husband. She can give it to him, share it with him and his family, basically do whatever she wants with it, but it has to be hers.
2) The boy and his family should have absolutely no say in how much she gets or when she gets it. It is just her rightful inheritance, the kind her brother would get, and it can be given at any point in time, not necessarily at her wedding.
Maybe we have to reword certain things to start making a change. If you insist on giving your daughter the share of your ancestral or self-made wealth at the time of her wedding itself, by all means do so, but call it her inheritance, not dowry, put it in her name, and the boy or his family should have no say in it at all.
Her friend said Vismaya would never have committed suicide because she was:
After 4 decades of life in this patriarchal society, I have come to the conclusion that the definition of ”bold” is not giving a fuck what your life looks like to others. What you look like to others. That what you feel about yourself and your life is more important than what others say about you.
Shifting the point of reference from external validation to internal validation takes a lifetime of unlearning and de-conditioning.
Unlearning because irrespective of gender, we are all conditioned to think about what others think from a very early age. If you come from a family that has a little bit of history and some standing/reputation in society, then even more so.
”Aalkkarenthu parayum” is something I have heard more times than I care to count in my life. ”Log kya kehenge”.
These people don’t really care about you. They only care about their own image in society.
You really want to sacrifice your happiness for what they say and think?
The most heartbreaking thing I heard was Vismaya’s friend saying that when she asked Vismaya why she didn’t update her Facebook on her first wedding anniversary, she replied that, ”This is a day I don’t want to remember. But it has already happened so I have no other go but to live like this for the rest of my life”.
Spoken by a 24-year old.
We as a society have to introspect about the kind of environment we have created if a 24-year old feels that she has no other option but to stay in a marriage for the rest of her life even though she’s already miserable in it after just one year, even after she’s been repeatedly beaten by her husband.
Just 24 but already defeated!
I don’t know enough about mental health to opine on the possibility of a ”bold” personality like Vismaya committing suicide or not.
But it fills me with rage that a man and a family she knew for just one year of her life were able to cause her death by either suicide or murder.
I saw the interview of his parents and they were talking about:
If you listened to them, you would think that Kiran was such a devoted husband, they were madly in love, they treated her even better than their own daughter, and she got the bruises in her eye because of some swelling due to an allergy.
So she must have committed suicide in a moment of impulsiveness is what they are implying.
Even if so, she must have been so overcome by grief, desperation, and hopelessness to do that.
Anyone who drives even a ”bold” person to that extreme should be in jail for life
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Karishma has been writing short stories since she was 8 and poetry since she was
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