“Today, out-dated, mythological misconceptions of women combined with the grossly manipulative practice of dowry means that bride-burning is as rampant today as it was 2,500 years ago in India.
Bride burning is the practice of dousing a new bride with kerosene and setting her ablaze to die. It is considered the most common form of dowry deaths. It is known as a bride’s suicide or bride’s murder at the hands of her husband and/or in law’s soon after marriage since they are dissatisfied with the amount of the dowry and in most cases, could not extort additional dowry.
It is happening in India at least 17 times per day, every single day of the year.
One reason cited by scholars is the new-found consumerism that has caused countries, such as India, to become greedy. The greed results in using dowry as a means to climb the social ladder, achieve economic security, accumulate material wealth, and ‘“keep up with the Jonasas”’. Because of consumer greed, the practice of dowry has spread to those communities and classes who traditionally do not practice dowry.33 Today, dowry has spread to all religious communities, including the Christian and Muslim communities in India, as a means to attain material wealth.”
Avnita Lakhani, Bride Burning: The “Elephant In the Room” is Out of Control, pages 1,3 and 4
All images copyright Jocelyn Braxton Armstrong