The Karnataka State Brahmin Development board has launched two schemes called Arundhati and Maitreyi to “aid the poor Brahmin families who struggle in matrimonial matters due to their poor economical backgrounds,” as per the Board’s chairman.
The former will grant Rs. 25,000 to 550 poor Brahmin brides if and when they marry while the latter will grant Rs. 3,00,000 with the precondition that the groom has to be a poor Brahmin boy/priest only.
The whole sum of Rs. 3,00,000 will be given to the brides in 3 installments wherein after the successful completion of 4 years of marriage, the bride will be given money with interest.
Why This Aid?
Karnataka has only 3% Brahmins amongst which many have poor economic backgrounds.
The Board works towards the welfare of these families and keeps launching several schemes from time to time. Apart from these two schemes, a certain budget has been set aside for scholarships, fee payments, and training of poor Brahmin students.
What Is Wrong With The Schemes Launched?
To start, the precondition for granting Rs. 3,00,000 is biased. If the government is genuinely invested in helping the poor Brahmin families, then the aid should be provided irrespective of the groom’s caste.
Although authentic, the precondition gives the scheme a false interpretation wherein inter-caste marriages are taboo. Plus, it needs to be the groom’s first marriage. This further hinders the freedom of choice of both parties.
Secondly, the condition of Brahmanic families will improve tenfold if their daughters are married off to other castes since it will not only be a means to spread their cultural and personal values but also increase their sense of belonging and harmony within the state.
Furthermore, the money granted with interest after the completion of 4 years may lead to the brides succumbing to domestic violence (if fate goes awry). The brides may have to suffer mightily while bowing to the hardships for the aid provided since life with a poor-economic background is troublesome.
Another complication in the schemes could be the presence of social evil, i.e. dowry.
Cases of brides being tormented or burnt alive for the sake of trivial money is not any less, not to mention the grant herein being a large sum. Dowry-related harassment could also be a crucial factor in advocating against the schemes.
Lastly, why look at matrimony as an option for the upliftment of a community? Women do not require monetary funds only for marriage alliances. The government should aid Brahmin women, regardless of how they plan to use the money.
The government should specifically hand out jobs to poor Brahmin girls and boys alike. The sole reason being that monetary aid will depart after a while, but if the source of income is nourished then the entire family will not be uplifted but also flourish harmoniously.
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