In todays universe, we are surrounded by media. Our lives are saturated by newspapers, wireless, books, telecasting, films, the Internet, and many other facets of media. These can be loosely classified into two types: intelligence media and popular media. In India, both these types provide an penetration into Indian life, which is filled with love affair, tradition, and all the other daily experiences and state of affairss one might come across. But, even though they might look the same, they both play really different functions in society.
Popular media represents and recounts a huge figure of existent life narratives, and portrays them in a mode gratifying for the audience. News media on the other manus, provides more facts and natural information for the audience to understand, with or without a steadfast sentiment of its ain on the affair. Popular media reaches out to a much larger audience, as both literate and illiterate people are able to entree it, while intelligence media merely reaches out to the literate and affluent people. This difference can go a job in certain state of affairss. Both these parts of media reflect society invariably, as they are shaped from and around experiences and narratives of the people in the society. Normally, both these types concur with each other in the content and representation of society, but there are specific instances in which this ceases to be true. An illustration of this is the portraiture of the prominence and effects of the dowery system in India today. For a long clip, both popular and intelligence media reflected the facets of the dowery system in the Indian society really vividly and comprehensively, and shared the same position on the subject. But over clip, it was noticed that popular media deviated from this form and no longer reflected the prominence of the dowery system in society, while the intelligence media continued to make so, therefore making an ideological difference between the two. The job of the dowery system is still outstanding, and the intelligence media continues to reflect this. But since popular media does non reflect society any longer, a bulk of the society comes under the feeling that there is nil incorrect in what they are making. This can do the dowery system to be relentless in the mundane lives of Indian households.
The dowery system is a cultural system in India in which the parents of the bride wage a big amount of money, and give expensive jewellery and other gifts such as auto or other family points, to the parents of the groom during matrimony ( Borah 2 ) . Traditionally, there were many grounds for the constitution of this system. It was a signifier of heritage for the bride, since all the household belongings was inherited by work forces. It was supposed to be the security for the bride in instance any bad luck befell her hubby ‘s house. It was besides a system of honouring the groom for his willingness to accept the bride as his married woman in matrimony, and the gifts given could run from anything important to flush a little item of good wants ( Borah 2 ) . However, the greed for dowery has affected about all ordinary households in India. Nowadays, in matrimonies between or amongst all hierarchical degrees of society, dowery is by and large an mute demand. And due to the exposure to mass media, the gifts given in dowery have transformed into a big transportation of wealth, doing it an of import factor in matrimony.
The societal and cultural effects of the dowery system are lay waste toing to the society as a whole. The system reduced adult females to a trade good and a beginning of wealth. Even if the dowery is paid, in most instances, the bride is tortured by her in-laws, mentally and physically as their demand for more dowry becomes endless ( Chirmade 1992 ) . This anguish by and large leads to suicide or slaying of the bride.
The ground why dowery is still relentless in India is non merely because it is hard to implement the jurisprudence against it or because the groom ‘s household is really demanding, but besides because the bride ‘s household continues to bear with it. Despite the widespread consciousness of the negative effects of dowery and the jobs cause by it, it is still seen as a manner of purchasing felicity for the bride ( Stone and James, 1995 ) . Many households believe that giving a big dowery would ensue in better intervention of the girl by the groom ‘s household. This has merely aggravated the job as the criterion for dowery became high and matrimony was made dependant on whether the bride ‘s household could run into that criterion of dowery or non.
A survey was done in 1980 which examined pupils ‘ outlooks of dowery for people with assorted instruction backgrounds. Even though bulk of the pupils viewed the dowery system as an ‘evil ‘ in society and considered it unimportant for matrimony, most of the brothers of the respondents gave or received doweries for their sisters ‘ matrimonies ( Rao and Rao, 1980 ) . Besides, depending on the societal position and richness of the household, and the instruction makings of the bride and the groom, the sum of dowery needed to be given varies significantly. There is a positive correlativity between a adult male ‘s instruction and position to the dowery his household demands. As a groom ‘s educational experience additions, the dowery demanded for the matrimony besides increases.
In 1961, the payment of dowery was prohibited under the Indian Civil Law, and besides under subdivisions 304B and 498A of the Indian Penal Code ( IPC ) . Despite this, this system of dowery has been a uninterrupted and ne’er stoping threat in Indian society. These Torahs were made in order to do it easier for adult females to seek damages from the torment she is under by the adult male ‘s household. But these Torahs have been of small aid to brides, who are harassed even today by their in-laws. Cases of such state of affairss have invariably been shown to the populace by the media.
The power of media in today ‘s universe is surprising. The media has the freedom to organize sentiments, and through this they can alter the sentiments of people. But, people forget that in the terminal, all media is making is reflecting society. The narratives the media screens, and the secret plans of the films that are made ( except phantasy fiction of class ) , all are based on state of affairss which may happen in twenty-four hours to twenty-four hours life, or existent life state of affairss. Lapp was the instance with the dowery system. The media clearly depicted the torments and hurting of Indian adult females as they were enduring from the inhuman treatments of the dowery system. This can be seen from really far back in popular every bit good as intelligence media.
Dowry-inspired slaying instances received huge coverage by intelligence media in the late seventiess and 1980s due to the active function played by adult females ‘s organisations. The adult females ‘s organisations played a really of import function in increasing consciousness and coverage of dowery related instances. A survey done on the coverage of dowery related instances from 1979-1984 concludes that there was a noticeable betterment in the coverage of dowery in the national documents due to the adult females ‘s organisations, although the coverage in regional documents remained the same. By 1979, one dowery related decease received serious imperativeness coverage. A 24 twelvemonth old bride from New Delhi, Tarvinder Kaur, was set on fire by her mother-in-law and sister-in-law due to an deficient dowery paid by her parents. Another important dowry-related slaying instance was that of Tripti Sharma, who worked at the Ministry of Defense. She was burned to decease by her hubby and his household in 1986. A more optimistic and recent instance is that of Nisha Sharma. In May 2003, she handed over her future hubby to the constabulary on the twenty-four hours of the marrying itself as he was demanding more dowery from her. This illustration shows what adult females need to make in instances of dowery maltreatment. Nisha refused to come under the force per unit areas of the groom ‘s household, and decided that she was non traveling to prolong it. These illustrations from intelligence media are clearly brooding of the province of personal businesss in India at that clip, and the instance with popular media was similar.
In 1992, the film ‘City of Joy ‘ depicted a household which had truly high dowery demands. In the film, the groom ‘s father clearly provinces, “ I am house in necessitating for my exceeding boy the bike, 1000 rupees, and one ounce of gold. ” The bride ‘s male parent responds by stating, “ The kid of a male monarch might be deserving that, and I ‘m non even certain of that! ” ( City of Joy ) Another 2001 film, ‘Lajja ‘ , clearly displayed the effects of the dowery system, it ‘s working, and how it may be a large load on the bride ‘s household. In the film, Maithili ( Mahima Chaudhary ) is about to be married to a affluent adult male of a household with a high societal position. Maithili ‘s parents give away everything they have in the dowery, including their land and saved money. Upon still falling short, they take loans from their friends, but they are still non able to garner the full sum. Maithili requests her future hubby to convert his pa to allow the remainder of the money be, but he is excessively frightened to make so. Sing this, and seeing her pa beg in forepart of the groom ‘s male parent to accept the money he has, she rebels, and calls off the nuptials. She was non able to bear to see her male parent being humiliated in such a mode by the groom ‘s male parent. Both these films showed that the bride ‘s household has to fight a batch in order to garner the dowery for the groom ‘s household, and therefore is a large load on them.
This word picture of the dowery system by popular media was in concurrency with its contemplation in the intelligence media, but as we move in front on the timeline, this concurrency easy fades off. The film ‘Lajja ‘ was the last film to clearly picture the hurting inflicted due to the dowery system. The 2006 film ‘Lage Raho Munna Bhai ‘ besides had the construct of dowery, but it did non show the effects of the dowery system, and merely showed that the construct of dowery existed. Since so, popular media has non depicted any instance of dowery related maltreatment or slaying. This would hold been absolutely all right if the society had transformed to this consequence and there were no more dowry related offenses taking topographic point, but this was non true, as intelligence media still continued to describe about such offenses taking topographic point.
‘Number of dowery instances goes up ‘ ( The Hindu, January 2008 ) ; ‘Dowry decease after love matrimony ‘ ( The Times of India, April 2008 ) ; ‘Harassed for dowery, instructor ends life ‘ ( The Indian Express, November 2007 ) . These are merely three headlines from three of India ‘s popular newspapers that show the continuity of the dowery system and its effects in modern India. Dowry is still prevailing in modern India, in non merely the illiterate subdivision of the population, but besides the educated elites in India ‘s major metropolitan metropoliss. Surprisingly in the past decennary, the figure of dowery related offense instances has really gone up, despite dowry being banned since 1961 by Indian jurisprudence. Harmonizing to the statistics released by the National Crime Records Bureau, a sum of 8391 dowry deceases were reported in 2010 itself, which means that a bride was killed every 90 proceedingss due to dowry related grounds. In 1988, this figure was 2209 ; in 1990 it rose to 4835 ; in 2000 ( a decennary earlier ) , this figure was 6995, and in 2007 it climbed up to an astounding 8093 ( Bedi 2012 ) .
Harmonizing to other authorities records, Delhi itself records a few hundred dowry deceases every twelvemonth, while adult females ‘s rights groups estimate this figure to be at 900 per twelvemonth. This is a phenomenal addition compared to the Numberss for the 1990s, which were about 300 per twelvemonth ( Bedi 2012 ) . It is of import to observe that these are merely official records, and are therefore vastly under-reported. 90 % of the instances in which adult females are burned are recorded as accidents, 5 % as self-destructions, and merely the staying 5 % of the instances are shown as slaying. These shockingly high Numberss clearly reflect the uninterrupted addition in dowry related offenses and deceases in India.
This is due to the continued commercialisation of matrimonies in the modern Indian society. India ‘s economic liberalisation has seen a proportionate rise in the degrees of greed as compared to 1990, and a bride is now perceived by her future in-laws as a beginning of possible hard currency flow. A celebrated quotation mark from former Justice Markandey Katju reads, “ On one manus, people regard adult females as goddesses, and on the other manus they burn them alive. This is against the norms of civilised society. It ‘s barbarian ” ( Bedi 2012 ) . This is in response to an entreaty filed by a hubby who had merely been sentenced to imprisonment for life by a Sessions tribunal for firing his married woman due to dowry related grounds.
The effects of the dowery system are so far and broad ranging, that they can even be traced back to the uterus. This system is the primary cause for female aborticide and infanticide as poorer parents get to avoid the womb-to-tomb load of salvaging up for the dowery for their girl ‘s matrimony ( Krishnamurthy, 1981 ) . The commercialisation of matrimony and female infanticide is clearly reflected in the film ‘Matrubhoomi ‘ , in which a contrary dowery system is depicted. The film shows a society in which there are no adult females left due to inordinate female infanticide, and the work forces have grown to be so sexually defeated, that they are ready to pay big sums of money to acquire a married woman for themselves or their boies. So every bit shortly as the caput of the household finds Kalki, they literally buy her from her male parent, by giving him five hundred thousand rupees and five cattles, and get married her to all five of his boies. Kalki merely becomes a beginning of money for her male parent, and a sex object for her hubbies ( Matrubhoomi ) .
Nowadays, there are celebrated advertizements which have been put up in many of the rural small towns, which read, “ Spend 500 rupees today, salvage 5000 rupees subsequently. ” This is a mention to the cost of abortion compared to the cost of the dowery which they might hold to give. It fundamentally encourages the households to acquire an abortion if their kid is a miss, so that they do n’t hold the load of paying the dowery while acquiring her married in the hereafter. This is the primary ground why India has a distorted sex ratio of 933 misss for every 1,000 male childs.
As is apparent, the jobs due to the dowery system have merely been lifting over the past decennary. Despite this, popular media has failed to reflect these jobs. News media has continued to maintain up with these updates, and study about them, but popular media has deviated into its ain way. Since popular media has a much larger audience compared to intelligence media, this consequences in the society acquiring a skewed point of view of what is go oning in their universe: an wrong portraiture of society in which what they are making is non incorrect. Besides, since popular media has a much larger international audience as compared to intelligence media, people from other states get a wholly different position of India: a universe in which the dowery system does non be and is non doing any jobs at all. Thus, an untrue version of the society is shown to the universe outside, which is non good, as when these people really come to India and read about the truth, it is a lurid disclosure for them.
A displacement in India ‘s attitude towards the dowery systems is desperately due. In simple words, dowery is equal to a household paying a adult male to accept their girl as his married woman, while the adult male along with his household, attempts to acquire the maximal monetary value out of the adult female ‘s household. This association of economic addition with adult females in matrimony is something which has long been relentless in India, and needs to halt. Simply doing anti-dowry Torahs has proved to be inefficient. We need to do the society see their errors and recognize what they are making incorrect, and this can merely be done if popular media continues to reflect society as it did earlier.
India must come together to stop this pattern. This could see twosomes impart their financess to supply instruction to their girls, alternatively of salvaging money for old ages and old ages for dowery. The yearss of the continuity of the dowery system in India must be numbered, or Indian society ‘s claim to be progressive is artful.