Ever been lucky enough to see a family “groom shopping” for their girl?
Let me introduce you to the Indian marriage market.
Though the “marriage market” in India is a seller market, but the product sold doesn’t go to the buyer. The groom is the product in this market.
The price of the product is fixed on the basis of the following factors-
- Social status
- Educational qualification
The price is generally paid in the form of cash, jewellery, household appliances, furniture, or vehicles. The buyer or her family’s qualification doesn’t matter here. The buyer’s family leaves no stone unturned to arrange the requires funds to buy the “product.” If they can’t arrange, no product will accept their girl.
Oh my god. Such a confusing purchase.
The buyer’s is deep neck in loss.
Because of the higher market price of products, and everyone wanting the best for their girl, several families starts arranging funds right from the day a girl is born.
Rates for different product varies. You may have to pay lakhs and lakhs for a doctor, upto 50lakhs for an engineer, and if you can’t afford them, you can go for simple “government jobs” product whose price varies from 15-25lakhs.
You get various options to chose from. Today with the advent of internet, matrimonial sites have made it easier to search for relationship. But even they aren’t saved from paying this market price. The “gift” question still persists.
Inspite of paying a hefty price, the bride’s family has several “buyer’s condition” to fulfill. This includes, “the girl should be fair fair and lovely!”, “She should know household work.”
Infact the initial screen process for a bride by the product starts with the physical screening. Sometimes the screening is skipped if the girl’s beauty is appreciated in family functions. In that case, an unofficial version of screening takes place.
You just need to send a CV. The HR department of the groom’s family shortlists the CV before the deal is finalised.
The CV is finalised depending upon various conditions –
- Whether the girl was involved with someone ever. (The young members of the HR department Stalk her Facebook/ Instagram/Twitter posts, photos and comments for the heart reacts!)
- Whether the girl’s family was ever involved with a man/woman who disdained the family’s name. Examples include marrying outside one’s caste/religion, or eloping, or worse stays away from home.
- Whether the girl is pure. Some products are shameless enough to ask this from the girl himself. It doesn’t matter if he’s himself involved in several hundred flings. What are you searching for? Desi Ghee?
Who said education would empower women? In India, job became an additional qualification for a girl to get married. The list of these qualifications is just increasing day by day.
I’m not surprised by the news of female infanticide in many parts of India. Parents who know they won’t be able to afford such a hefty price cry at the birth of a girl.
And you know what, my blood boils when I see even in a love marriage, the bride’s family pays this market price, and the groom makes an excuse of being unaware. Wasn’t love enough?
One can’t expect anything from a stranger. But one can expect things from someone who knows them, claims to love them.
When will this change?
How will it change if men don’t speak for the women who’s going to spend her entire life with him? How will it change if a girl’s family is still the inferior one? How will it change till a girl has the power to “reject” the guy?