In search of dowry, youth go to Iran but slip into addiction
TALOQAN (Pajhwok): Scores of northern Takhar residents say that a sharp increase in dowry has forced many young people to travel for work to Iran where they become drug addicts.
Sirajuddin, 35, a resident of the locality, told Pajhwok Afghan News that young people mostly travelled to Iran to earn dowry and other wedding expenses but most of them returned as drug addicts.
“I wish to get married soon but dowry and heavy wedding expenses have halted my plan,” he deplored, saying his family had proposed several girls for him in last few years but none of the plans worked.
“Every family demands five or six lakh afghanis in dowry while I can’t afford this amount or other wedding expenses,” added the university graduate. He is also a government employee but still could not afford wedding expenses.
Rahimullah, another resident, said: “Single and married men travel to Iran to earn money. The unmarried men travel to earn money and get married where as the married men travel to earn money and pay off their debts which they had borrowed for their weddings. Most of them returned back as drug addicted, he added.
Ahmad Omaid hails from Takhar said that he went to Iran to earn money for his wedding while returned as drug addicted. “I borrowed four lac Afghanis from people to tie the knot to my cousin five years ago whom I loved. The people demanded their money back after two months of my wedding. I decided to go to Iran to take off the debt and I spent four years there. My wife left me by force when she came to know about my drug addiction,” he added.
“Drug addiction made me to live without family and out of home even while living in my own country and area,” he lamented.
Maulvi Abdul Samad, head of Ulama council, said increasing wedding expenses caused moral exploitation and drug addiction among youth. “Heavy wedding expenses and inappropriate cultural activities have halted youth from marriages,” he opined. The departments’ concerned, he said, should take immediate notice of the situation to reduce youth problems.
Aaqebatullah Adeebyar, director information and culture, confirmed heavy wedding expenses and customs in the province. “We don't have any special branch to reduce dowry but we look forward to clerics preaching against the customs."
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