by Mamun Islam
RANGPUR, Mar 10 (BSS) - In an effort to empower the rural womenfolk, husbands have created a glittering example by paying `Denmohar' spontaneously to 139 wives in five backward, remote and hardly reachable char villages here on the Teesta riverbeds.
The unique success was achieved following hectic social awareness building activities conducted under the Char Livelihoods Programme (CLP) by RDRS Bangladesh in these villages under Gangachara upazila during the past one year.
These activities are running in Joyram Ojha, Purbo Echlee, Eshorkul, Paschim Echlee and Sankardaho char villages with the assistance's of the USAID, AusAID and GoB for eradicating decades-old social curses and improving life standard of char people.
As a result, social curses like child marriage, dowry, polygamy, divorce, repression on women, human trafficking etc marked sharp reduction in these villages where life could not be thought without these curses even few years back.
Programme Manager of CLP Mamunur Rashid today said these motivational activities are being conducted by local Village Development Committees (VDC) and Adolescents' Groups formed to make the people aware since July 2010.
The char people are taking part in ongoing workshops, public hearing meetings, discussions and rallies that changed social attitude improving char life standard leading to spontaneous `Denmohar' payment," he added.
The 139 husbands paid `Denmohar' to their respective 139 wife at a Community Fair organised by RDRS Bangladesh at Paschim Echlee Bagerhat Custer Village there in observance of the International Women's Day-2012 on Thursday.
Laksmitari union chairman Foysal Hassan attended the `Denmohar' giving ceremony as the chief guest with local union member Abdus Samad in the chair.
CLP's Development Manager Selim Moral, union members Dulal Mian, Abdul Monnaf, President of Purbo Echlee VDC Abuzar Rahman, Training Officer of RDRS Bangladesh Jiban Kumar Podder and Technical Officer Manik Chandra Das addressed.
The husbands paid `Denmohar' worth Taka 19,85,144 by handing over Taka 14,63,056 cash money among 96 wives, 34 cows worth Taka 3,65,042 among 34 wives, a goat worth Taka 2,976 to a wife, gold ornaments worth Taka 29,670 among two wives and land worth Taka 1,24,400 among six wives in the ceremony.
Moyna Begum said my husband cleared my `Denmohar' spontaneously and I am very happy after getting it as my right.
Mohubar Rahman, 81, of Paschim Echlee village cleared `Denmohar' to his wife Mohsina Begum, 65, after 52 years and Shafikul islam, 34, of village Char Eshorkul paid the same to his wife Swapna Begum, 28, after 12 years of their respective marriage.
Hafez Uddin, 55, paid `Denmohar' to his wife Laily Begum, 40, after 22 years, Kormat Ali, 70, cleared the same to his wife Julekha Begum, 60, after 45 years of their respective marriage in the ceremony.
Talking to BSS, the wives said they feel honoured after getting their `Denmohar' especially on the International Women's Day as recognition of their rights and termed the event as very special in their respective life.