Interlinkages of dowry and experience of domestic violence among young married women in rural India
Sudeshna Ghosh, International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS)
Marriage is customarily accorded central significance in the lives of Indian women especially newly married adolescent women are aware that they have to “adjust” to multiple changes in their lives. The culture of dowry is widely prevalent. The paper examines linkages of dowry and experience of domestic violence in rural West Bengal. The study involves 654 married women aged 13-24 years selected by multistage sampling. Almost three-fourth reported that dowry has been demanded at the time of their marriage, half reported that dowry had been met by borrowing money. Many have reported of facing dowry-related verbal violence at the in-laws place. Majority reported of current dowry-related problems at their in-laws place at the time of survey, either they are verbally abused or physically assaulted. It is interesting to note that similar proportions of women whose husbands were not involved and whose husbands were involved did not support their wives.