Muscat: An Omani father of a bride has challenged the common practice of requesting high dowries by asking the groom to pay 20 riyals ($52) as dowry for his daughter.
Saud Al Farsi, a 60-year-old resident of Ibri province, told Gulf News on Thursday that he wants his daughter to live a happy life and he does not want her husband to take out loans to pay for the dowry and a fancy wedding.
It is common in Gulf states for the family’s of brides to request high dowries that are often perceived as an indication of family status, class and how much a family values its women.
The entire dowry goes to the bride.
“Women are not commodities. They are human beings. They are not sold or bought,” Al Farsi said.
Al Farsi consulted with his daughter about the dowry before taking the decision.
“She agreed. The dowry is for her, not for me. I don’t want to land her husband into financial trouble by taking loans. I consider him as my son,” he said.
What is the point?
This is not the first time for Al Farsi to ask for 20 riyals as dowry for his daughter, he asked for the same amount of money for all three of his daughters.
“Life is difficult. What is the point to ask for expensive dowry?” Al Farsi continued.
He said that investing in a house or a car for his daughter and her husband are more important than expensive dowry.
“Expensive dowry has been always an obstacle for young men to get married,” he said.
Al Farsi called on other fathers to follow his example.
The average dowry in Oman amounts to 3,000 riyals (about $7,800) but can be reach up to 20,000 riyals for wealthier families.