Kanyadaan, meaning giving away a daughter. For most of you who don’t know what Kanyadaan is, here it is, in simple words. Kanya means Woman and Daan means Donation.
A ritual of stupidity!?
Kanyadaan is a ritual, a tradition that is being followed since ages. I ask why does this ritual even exist?
Sometimes, I feel like, in the name of marriage, a daughter is sold forever. But a father doesn’t want to donate his daughter. He ties her into the relationship of love & respect with her better half. It shouldn’t be about bidding goodbye to the daughters, instead, it should be a happy moment, as it is said: “shaadi do logo ki nahi, do parivaar ko hoti hai.”
That means everything gets double now, it’s a double offer – two families, two addresses and lots of happiness. Then why the ritual of “Kanyadaan”? I don’t believe in such ritual because women are not objects & marriage is not a charity. Objectifying women has not been rare, and making her a gift is nothing to be surprised of as well. But what surprises me is the fact that this ritual is still in practice, unquestioned.
The world has evolved!
Times have changed, women are getting educated, achieving their dreams, contributing to family finances, taking care of their parents and fulfilling many other responsibilities. Then what is the logic behind still continuing with the rituals like Kanyadaan? I believe, a ritual is just a matter of time and with time rituals should change as well. The ideology of carrying them through generations makes no sense because when we evolve through generations, it means our ideologies should evolve too.
I understand that there is respect towards traditions, no matter how much we grow in life. But if the tradition lacks the logic then why should we follow it. There were also rituals like Sati Sahagamanam which asked women to burn in the fire of her man’s pyre in the death funeral. Out of people’s stupidity, for many eras, it was considered a tradition. But with time, people like Raja Ram Mohan Roy fought against such foolish rituals. I guess, he was that age’s feminist! And eventually, in British rule, they banned this ritual. In the same way, we should be able to understand the traditions that involve stupidity and fight against them.
Fight for yourselves!
Questioning and shunning these rituals will serve a very strong purpose of taking away the religious and moral sanctions that come in the way of providing ourselves with the social settings that we know are logical and justified.
I strongly believe, and urge every girl who finds herself out of her traditional roles, who sees herself at par with males, that she must question these kinds of rituals, “Kanyadaan” in particular. Because no one will come and fight for such things, you should do it for yourself. There are more pressing matters to address and fight for one. With evolving generations, we should understand that it is high time to stand up for ourselves rather than expecting someone else to do so.