It is a matter of national shame how even in the 21st century our educated and independent daughters are facing dowry harassment at the hands of their husbands and in-laws. What is even more disappointing is how the parents, even after being aware of the harassment of their daughters, let them struggle in an abusive marriage.
Recently one such incident of dowry harassment left us ashamed and heartbroken. As per the sources, Vismaya, a 22-year-old medical student was found dead at her in-laws’ house in Kollam on June 21st, in a suspected case of death related to dowry harassment.
Vismaya’s Marriage: The Ugly Tale of Harassment & Abuse
Vismaya V Nair, a final year Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery student, was on verge of becoming an ayurvedic doctor. In May 2020, she had married Kiran Kumar, an engineering graduate, who was working as an assistant motor vehicle inspector with the state Motor Vehicle Department.
Vismaya died two days after she sent messages to a cousin confessing that she was subjected to brutal domestic violence by her husband.
In her messages to her cousin, Vismaya had written about how after assaulting her, her husband allegedly pulled back her hair and stamped on her face. She says in the message that she has not told anyone else about the assault. The photos she shared with her cousin show injuries on her face, shoulder, and hands. In messages, it was also mentioned that the assault was frequent.
Vismaya’s Family Shocking Revelations
While sharing the details of how Kiran tortured her daughter for dowry, Vismaya’s father Trivikraman Nair told the media:
“At the time of marriage, I had given 100 sovereigns of gold, 1.20 acres of land and a Toyota Yaris car as dowry. However, he was torturing my daughter, demanding more money. As the car, which was gifted to the couple, was bought after availing a loan, I could not meet his demand for more money…. Even though I gifted a new car worth Rs 11 lakh ….But Kiran used to harass my daughter saying that that car does not fit for his status. He wanted the car to be sold and the money given to him.”
After assaulting Vismaya in front of her family a few months ago, the couple lived separately for some time. It was three months ago that Kiran took Vismaya back to his house.
She had gone to her college to write an exam but did not come back as she went with her husband to his house in Sasthamkotta in Kollam district. On the morning of June 21, Vismaya’s family got a call that she was critical and admitted to a hospital. When they rushed to the hospital, they were informed that she was brought dead and was suspected to have died by suicide.
While sharing the details of her daughter’s trauma, Vismaya’s mother Sajitha V Nair told the media:
“She called me on June 20 and asked me to give her Rs 5,500 to pay her exam fees. I did not have the money and I told her to ask Kiran. She said he would shout at her. Kiran had blocked her from contacting her father and brother. After she begged Kiran, she was allowed to call only me. She would call me from the bathroom, and once she told me that he hit her so badly in the face that her mouth was bleeding. I told her to come back, but she said what people say, she will somehow endure it….”
Trivikraman Nair claimed that his wife had not informed him or Vismaya’s brother about the incidents of assault. The police had registered a case based on the complaint filed by Vismaya’s family, Meanwhile, Vismaya’s husband Kiran has surrendered the day after her death.
The Bottom Line
Even though the investigation is on, Vismaya’s death is just another ugly reminder of how even educated women are made victims of dowry harassment. It is high time that parents stop entertaining the idea of giving dowry and their daughters to these greedy monsters. It is high time that parents realize that divorced daughters are better than dead daughters!
R.I.P Vismaya, we failed you!
If you are a woman facing violence at home, you can access our helpline directory here.