By Pervez Bari
Bhopal: Dr. Asma Zehra, chief organiser Women’s Wing of All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB), has appealed to the members of the Muslim community to eradicate Dowry evil on a war-footing. Dowry is “Haraam” and an act of sin. Marriages should be made simple and easy according Sunnah of Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Participation and attendance in marriages where dowry is given or taken should be avoided totally to curb this evil.
This appeal comes in the wake of the tragic incident of suicide of Ayesha Arif Khan in Ahmadabad which has shaken the Muslim Community across India. The issue of Dowry and harassment for Dowry has led to the death of an innocent daughter. This needs condemnation in strongest terms, Dr. Zehra said in a statement from Hyderabad.
Dr. Zehra has appealed to the elders of the Muslim community especially Ulema and Imaams to create awareness of “simple marriage” and condemn the taking & giving of dowry in any form at Friday “Khutba” (sermons) in Mosques.
She pointed out that Ayesha was suffering from harassment by husband and in-laws. She was under deep depression & grief with loss of hope together with severe social pressure. Her last words that she “doesn’t want to see the face of any human being” reflects her agony and pain her departing video has shaken the community especially women, she lamented.
The statement said: “Evil of Dowry has deep roots in the society. The rich & poor, educated & illiterate class continue to demand cash, furniture, vehicle and dinner from bride’s parents. Islamic laws empower women with “Meher” at time of marriage and lay responsibility of setting up of house on man as he is the “Qawwam” (Care-taker) of the family. It is a sad reality that Muslim community has gone into collective transgression by deviating from the path of Islam. Lack of awareness & deep rooted un-Islamic customs and traditions have made marriage difficult & poor girls whose parents are not in a position to pay dowry spend year without marriage. After marriage the women face domestic issues, harassment from husband and in-laws but there is no redressal system in place in community or society. Suicide is “Haraam” (totally forbidden) but the circumstances leading to this event need deeper introspection”.
Daughters of community are precious pearls. Their safety & security should be top priority of the community. It is time to introspect and repent for this collective criminal negligence of Muslim community towards the daughters, she moaned.