Dear Rajdeep,

On the 11th of July, your news channel ran the story, ‘IFS officer on sale for Rs 1-cr dowry’. We at The Great Indian Mutiny blogged about it. However, we have received a few new inputs about this episode. I would appreciate if you would follow up on the following points as the life of a very talented civil servant is at stake.

He would probably never be able to rise above the shadow of doubt that this report has created on him inside the Ministry. A young and promising career has been pretty much nipped in the bud. He was AIR-23 and he opted for IFS though he could have got IAS and home cadre, hardly the kind of money-hungry guy your channel is projecting him to be. He might not be able to go for his language training (he opted for Arabic and was going to Cairo, even though he could have opted for French/Paris if he so wished) and his probation period would almost certainly be extended if an FIR is filed.

  1. If Amit’s family was really the type who would go for big dowry, would they have approached such a “modest” family? I am sure you would agree that in India there is no shortage of rich people trying to marry their daughters to civil servants. Do you seriously believe that Amit lacked such offers? Is it logical to believe that Amit’s family rejected all the rich families and selected a modest family (remember that they had to take “loans” to spend 1.5 lakhs on the engagement) and *then* asked them for a big dowry?
  2. If the girl’s family got to know about this dowry demand in December’05, why did they not break off the engagement and file a police case?
  3. If the marriage was “suspended”, as the IBN website says, why did the girl’s family go on with preparations (as admitted in their petition to NCW) for the wedding in March’06?
  4. When Amit did not turn up for the wedding in March, why did the girl’s family not approach the police? In fact, why have they not filed an FIR even till date?

Contrary to what your website says, Rachna did not come “to know that Amit had married elsewhere” after a few months. This was in full knowledge of the girl’s family because Darbhanga is a very small place. In fact, her family had even received an invitation card (courtesy the family of the girl to whom Amit has got married now – they have some common friends/relatives). Moreover, these “few months” are actually 6 months, which is no short stretch of time if anyone wants to take corrective action on a dowry demand.

The real reason for this story to have come out now involves TRP-hungry media channels, as much as it involves the misuse and threat of dowry laws against the prospective grooms.

Please do a follow up and let’s try to undo some of the damage caused to Amit, his family and his career.