Kumar was physically and verbally abusive toward Nair, the judgment said.
“She had lost all the charms in life,” the court ruling said. “She was so desperate. Feeling of despondency surmounted over her. She was severely taunted on account of dowry soon before the death.”
In 'n onderhoud with CNN last year
, Nair’s brother Vijith said Kumar had restricted his sister’s social media use
, prevented her from calling her parents and even stopped her from flying
“because of this dowry.
“We gave him a good car, but he didn’t stop demanding a bigger and more expensive car,” hy het gesê.
He described his sister as a “bright and bold” person who “loved to dance.”
Despite being outlawed under the 1961 Dowry Prohibition Act, India’s dowry system remains deeply entrenched in society and has become associated with violence against women.
In the 1980s, lawmakers introduced sections into India’s penal code allowing authorities to charge men or their family members with a “dowry death.” The charge, which can also be brought in cases of suicide, is punishable with prison terms ranging from seven years to life.
In 2020, the country recorded more than 10,000 complaints over dowries and nearly 7,000 dowry deaths, according to the National Crime Records Bureau of India.
Kerala, where Nair died, boasts some of the highest literacy rates for both men and women in India, and is generally considered a progressive state — but it “exhibits stark and persistent dowry inflation since the 1970s and has the highest average dowry in recent years,” according to a World Bank report released last June.