Aleem Khan Falaki’s Socio Reform Society has been working for two decades to eradicate the dowry system
He appears to be on a mission impossible. He has set for himself the goal of eradicating the menace of dowry from the society – a task as unfeasible as slamming shut a revolving door. That’s how it looks given the ground reality.
But Aleem Khan Falaki is unfazed. Rather, he is emboldened to take the bull by the horns. The spirited speeches given by college boys and girls recently on this topic showed that Mr. Falaki sure had succeeded in igniting the young minds.
Some of the speakers were so charged up that they did not bother to stick to the five-minute deadline. “You can disqualify me but let me speak my mind on this subject,” remarked a girl.
Mr. Falaki’s Socio Reform Society has been working for the last two decades to remove this malignant fistula from the Muslim society. No, it has not succeeded yet, but then it has not come up a cropper either.
Over the years, Mr. Falaki’s ‘Say no to dowry’ campaign has caught the imagination of the common man.
His book “Mard bhi bikte hain .. jehz ke liye” (Men too are sold for dowry) tells it all. It is an eye-opener and perhaps the last word on the evil of dowry. It doesn’t just reflect Mr. Falaki’s anguish, but also discusses the subject in the light of Quranic injunctions and Prophetic traditions. “I wish the words of the writer stirs the conscience of the readers and knocks the close vistas of the heart and sapience,” says Moulana Khalid Saifullah Rahmani, an eminent scholar. “Dowry is nothing but civilised beggary and a kind of male prostitution,” says Mr. Falaki and calls for boycott of weddings where dowry is involved and the ‘nikah’ dinner is imposed on the bride’s parents.
According to him, a whopping Rs.1,500 crore is spent annually on 50,000 Muslim marriages in the State at the conservative estimate of Rs.3 lakh per marriage. “This amount is not being spent on a nuclear plant but on dowry and one-time’s food,” rues Mr. Falaki.
The dowry evil, he says, has not spared any community. But none realise that it is against man’s ego to celebrate at someone else expense. “Muslims remember the Prophet’s instructions to accept invitation but forget his warnings about attending functions where the Shariat rules are violated,” Mr. Falaki points out.
He calls the justification for dowry made out on the plea that the Prophet too gave ‘jehez’ to his daughter as ‘shifty trick’.
“Whatever he gave to Hazrat Fatima is in fact purchased out of the dower amount paid by the Prophet’s son-in-law Hazrat Ali,” explains Mr. Falaki.