Would you pay dowry for your daughter's marriage?

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by Ray, Sep 1, 2012.

  1. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    NDTV Mid-Term Poll 2012: Would you pay dowry for your daughter's marriage?

    NDTV commissioned Ipsos, a leading market research agency, to conduct fieldwork for this opinion poll from a sample size of almost 30,000, covering as many as 125 out of the 543 Lok Sabha seats in the 18 big states. (Complete coverage)

    Three out of five respondents would pay dowry on a daughter's marriage. Haryana, which has the worst gender ration in the country, tops the dowry list. Gujarat will be happy to be at the bottom of this one.

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    Check teh video.


    The poll was carried out in 125 constituencies spread over 18 states (these account for over 20% of the 543 Lok Sabha seats). Each Lok Sabha constituency was selected using a statistical formula based on voting patterns of 2009 Lok Sabha Elections. In each Lok Sabha constituency, two to three assembly segments were selected at random where approximately 100 interviews were conducted in homes. For the voting intention question, the respondents were given a mock ballot paper on which the symbols of the parties were set out. They were asked to mark their preference on the ballot paper and then place the ballot paper in a mock ballot box.

    Disclaimer: The Mid-Term poll results as depicted on this web site are based on a survey conducted by an independent entity. Due care has been taken to make this page an accurate source of information. However all surveys are subject to sampling error; the sampling error in this poll does not exceed ±3%.

    NDTV Mid-Term Poll 2012: Would you pay dowry for your daughter's marriage?
     
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  3. panduranghari

    panduranghari Senior Member Senior Member

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    Lessons of Gold

    When a Gold Necklace Isn’t Jewelry
    Jeff Clark, BIG GOLD

    When it comes to supply and demand, what you’ve been told about gold jewelry is wrong. That’s a strong statement, but I’ve got a firsthand account to back it up.

    Most industry organizations separate jewelry from investment when they tally the numbers on the uses for gold. This makes sense, of course, because one is a coin or bar purchased as a store of value and the other is something designed to be worn. But what if large populations around the world view them as serving the same purpose?

    My friend Jayant Bhandari, who’s worked for Casey Research in the past and is now a consultant to an institutional investor, has told me for years that excluding gold jewelry from investment demand is inaccurate because there are many Asian cultures where a gold necklace is considered, in all practical uses of the word, an investment.

    I’ve often wondered to what extent that’s true. Do Indians, for example, really see a gold necklace as a preserver of wealth? Gold adornments are so widespread in their society – it’s hard to find a picture of an Indian bride who’s not wearing numerous gold accessories – that it seems obvious the use is, in fact, primarily as jewelry. But is something else going on here that escapes our Western view of the precious metal?

    I decided to go the source. Jayant arranged an interview with me and his mother Shanta, who has lived in India her entire life. If anyone knows, it would be her. With Jayant translating, I learned some things I think you’ll find fascinating and perhaps make you reconsider how you view gold...

    Jeff: Shanta, why do Indians buy a lot of gold?

    Shanta: Indians feel deep in their hearts that gold is the best way to preserve and invest wealth. Indians have always felt that whenever they need money, they can sell their gold to generate cash. This is the way we have always done it.

    Every mother wants to give her daughter gold because the wealth can be saved on her body. And the mother is secure in knowing the gold will stay with her. Even the mother-in-law thinks this way. That’s why it's commonly given during weddings.

    Jeff: I understand that gold is very important to Indian women.

    Shanta: Gold is the wealth of the women and is extremely important to them. Men don't give or receive much gold. It is transferred from woman to woman, from generation to generation. Men are usually not involved. Gold is preserved by the women so that if they have a crisis, they can use it.

    Women consider gold to be their biggest security. Indian women have started working in the last decade, but the young working women are still passionate about gold.

    Jeff: So gold jewelry is something more than just a pretty necklace?

    Shanta: I do not think of gold as a necklace or a bracelet. Indian women think in terms of how much gold is to be given to their daughter or daughter-in-law. So it is not viewed as jewelry but as a basic store of value.

    Every Indian likes to have gold. This is true whether they’re Muslim or Christian.

    Jeff: How much gold do Indian families like to have?

    Shanta: For the middle class, I would say roughly 20% of their total wealth is in gold. In the past it was more like half. Fifty years ago, they had no other option but to keep their wealth in gold. Now they can buy other things, too.

    Jeff: Are some forms of gold more desirable than others?

    Shanta: In the past women preferred to have jewelry, but there is a trend to keep some of it in brick form now. Some women reach the limit of jewelry they want to hold, so they buy coins or bricks. Even if the woman doesn’t wear the jewelry, she will still keep it.

    Jeff: How do Indians acquire it?

    Shanta: In the past you would take your gold to the jeweler, tell him what you wanted, and he would make it for you. The modern-day woman will pick something out from the jeweler.

    Old jewelry keeps getting recycled. Every family has a lot of gold – four or five generations or more. Eventually you lose the emotional connection with certain pieces and will have them made into something else.

    Jeff: Where do Indians typically keep their gold?

    Shanta: Historically, Indians would hide their gold or bury it. These days they use bank lockers. But no one likes to talk about their gold.

    Jeff: Would you and other Indians ever sell your gold jewelry?

    Shanta: Gold is given as collateral, so you would only sell it if you had no other way to raise money. We prefer to keep it and won’t sell it unless there is a crisis.

    Jeff: How is gold used as collateral?

    Shanta: Gold is seen as a store of value and is only used when you really need money. So we would use it as collateral for a surgery or other emergency, a wedding, or maybe in an extreme case, a house. We would not use it for a TV or car or anything like that. We might sell some for education, so only for very important things.

    Jeff: Might you sell some because the price is high?

    Shanta: We typically would not sell gold just because the price is high. Gold is not an investment; it is a store of value.

    Jeff: Is there much interest in buying silver?

    Shanta: The key is gold. The rich and middle class normally buy gold, not silver. Silver is very common among the poor class, so if you are not rich, then you will buy silver. The poor people buy silver for the same reason the middle class buy gold.

    Jeff: Do other factors affect why Indians buy gold?

    Shanta: The stock market has recently fallen from a lot of corruption cases, so the people are increasingly interested in gold.

    Jeff: Would it bother you if the price dropped?

    Shanta: It would not bother me because I still have my gold. If gold makes a new high, I am not inclined to sell it, either. Of course, I would be happy if the price goes up.

    Jeff: Thank you, Shanta.

    Shanta: You are most welcome.

    As Shanta makes clear, gold jewelry in India is more than a fancy adornment; it’s a store of value and preserver of wealth. It’s not even an investment; it’s more important than a rising brokerage statement.

    In India and many other Asian countries, the form gold comes in is less important than how many ounces you own. If you lived in India, gold would represent about 20% of your assets.

    So the next time you hear a report about gold jewelry in India, remember that Shanta and others aren’t wondering how good a gold bracelet will look on their wrist, but rather are seeing it as a vehicle for storing wealth.

    I think there’s a lesson in this for us North Americans. How do you view the gold you own – is it a pretty coin, an investment, or a store of value? Given the obscene abuse most fiat currencies are undergoing, I think we’d be best served viewing it as not just a potential money maker but as protection against the rabid inflation that will damage our economy and dilute our pocketbooks.
     
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  4. panduranghari

    panduranghari Senior Member Senior Member

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    Dowry is looked down upon now in East and also in West. But there was a reason why dowry was given.

    In India there is a tradition which says send your daughter into a wealthier family than yourself, but if you bring a girl into the family as a daughter in law, she is better if she is from a poorer family than yourself.

    When dowry is given by the girls family, it WAS mainly for these reasons;
    1. An increase in the family numbers, puts stress on the finances of the boys family. To make this a bit easy, dowry is given.
    2. Though nowadays dowry is taken over by husbands family, the practice was dowry belonged to the girl. She could use it to what ever way she felt it was important. She did not essentially need to depend on the boys family- Atleast once she becomes more settled into her new role.
    3. Indian society WAS primarily matriarchal in structure. The mother-in-law controls the finances in the house mainly. She ensures resources are spent efficiently. Hence the wealth is in her control. And wealth is held mostly as gold.
    4.Over centuries from Huns to Mughals to Persians to Europeans and now the corrupt Indian politicians have pillaged and looted the country. Gold has always remained in flow and was easily transferred from one rulers kingdom to another.
     
  5. parijataka

    parijataka Senior Member Senior Member

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    The old lady makes perfect sense!

     
  6. Kesang

    Kesang Regular Member

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    In our tribe. Man gives dowry to women's family. Tradition of guys is opposite of ours.
     
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  7. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Happens among some Brahmins and Malayalees too
     
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  8. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    I’ll like to believe dowry could also have been given because back in the days the daughter’s share in the distribution of property and others (cash, jewelry, etc) at the time of making a will would generally be negligible or very limited, so the boy’s family would have already worked that out and made the demand. And even today, the girls end up getting pretty much peanuts, so to say. Was it Amir Khan on his show who said the daughter’s share remains around 5-10%, and rest is happily passed on to the son.

    UP indeed seems to be the worst victim here, just last year I was talking to a friend and his distant cousin, a CA, and her parents were ready to handout a dowry of 8 crs. I am not sure if it’s a normal figure there, but if it is, any wonder then why this state would be one of the most corrupt.

    Fortunately though, the state I come from, dowry and dowry seekers get looked down upon and overall, girls today are themselves becoming strongly vocal against any such practice within the family and would rather not marry a guy who and whose family would make such a demand.
     
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  9. The Messiah

    The Messiah Bow Before Me! Elite Member

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    Never taken or given in my family.
     
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