Indian dowry payments remarkably stable, study says

By Soutik Biswas

India correspondent

image copyrightAFP

image captionOver 90% of couples dwell with the husband’s family after marriage in India

Dowry payments in India’s villages beget been largely receive over the final few many years, a World Monetary institution look has came all over.

Researchers checked out 40,000 marriages that took dwelling in rural India between 1960 and 2008.

They came all over that dowry used to be paid in 95% of the marriages although or no longer it’s been unlawful in India since 1961.

The put collectively, every now and then described as a social contaminated, continues to thrive and leaves girls individuals liable to home violence and even death.

Paying and accepting dowry is a centuries-dilapidated custom in South Asia where the bride’s fogeys reward cash, garments and jewellery to the groom’s family.

The look used to be fixed with dowry files from 17 Indian states that beget 96% of India’s population. It focussed on rural India since a majority of Indians proceed to dwell in villages.

Economists S Anukriti, Nishith Prakash and Sunghoh Kwon feeble files on cost of gifts – cash and kind – obtained or given at the time of marriage.

They calculated “receive dowry” as the variation between the price of gifts given by the bride’s family to the groom or his family and those given by the groom’s family to the bride’s family. The groom’s family had paid extra to the bride’s family in a truly minute different of marriages.

They came all over the moderate receive dowry had been “remarkably receive” over time, with some inflation sooner than 1975 and after 2000.

And the researchers came all over that a groom’s family spends on moderate about 5,000 rupees ($67; £48) in precise phrases in gifts to the bride’s family.

The gifts from the bride’s family, unsurprisingly, cost seven times extra at about 32,000 rupees ($429). This implied a median precise receive dowry of 27,000 rupees ($361).

Dowries be pleased a in point of fact intensive proportion of household financial savings and earnings: in 2007, the moderate receive dowry in rural India used to be associated to 14% of annual household earnings.

“As a share of earnings, dowry has gone down over time because on moderate rural incomes beget risen in India,” acknowledged Dr Anukriti, an economist at the World Monetary institution Analysis Community.

“But this is factual a median claim – to calculate how large dowry is relative to household earnings for each and every household, we can need files on household earnings or expenditure, however sadly we don’t beget such files on hand,” she acknowledged.

image copyrightHindustan Times

Marriage in India

  • Merely about all marriages in India are monogamous
  • Lower than 1% consequence in divorce
  • Of us play fundamental position in deciding on the bride/groom – in extra than 90% of marriages between 1960 and 2005, fogeys chose the associate
  • Over 90% of couples dwell with the husband’s family after marriage
  • Over 85% of girls individuals marry someone from start air their have village
  • 78.3% of marriages are within the same district

Offer: Marriage Markets and the Rise of Dowry in India by Gaurav Chiplunkar and Jeffrey Weaver

Rather a lot has modified in India between 2008 and now. But researchers teach the tendencies or patterns of dowry payments weren’t more seemingly to be too diverse this day within the absence of any “dramatic modifications or structural breaks in marriage markets, authorized guidelines, human capital of men and girls individuals and girls individuals’s labour market outcomes”.

The look additionally came all over that dowry used to be prevalent in all indispensable non secular groups in India. Curiously, Christians and Sikhs showed a “placing develop in dowry”, leading to better moderate dowries than Hindus and Muslims.

But any other animated discovering used to be the huge differences in states over time. The southern assert of Kerala showed a “stark and protracted dowry inflation” since the 1970s and had the suited moderate dowry lately, the look came all over. Numerous states a lot like Haryana, Punjab and Gujarat additionally registered inflation in dowry. On the different hand, moderate dowry diminished in states of Odisha (formerly Orissa), West Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.

image copyrightGetty Photographs

image captionDowry gifts intention in cash and kind

“We set aside no longer beget definitive answers about these differences. We hope to explore this question in future study,” Dr Anukriti acknowledged.

In a paper published in January, economists Gaurav Chiplunkar and Jeffrey Weaver feeble files from extra than 74,000 marriages in India over the final century to point to how the dowry machine had superior over time.

The researchers came all over that the proportion of Indian marriages in conjunction with dowry payments doubled between 1930 and 1975, and the moderate precise cost of dowry payments tripled. But put up-1975, there used to be a decline in moderate dowry dimension.

They estimated that the complete cost of dowry payments in India between 1950 and 1999 used to be nearly a quarter of one thousand billion greenbacks.

Learn extra by Soutik Biswas

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