HYDERABAD: Who wouldn’t jump at a wedding invitation? But here is a guy who more often than not turns down an invitation unless it meets up to his principles. Aleem Khan Falaki gets good number of invitations, but he makes it to only those weddings where no dowry or dinner is imposed on the bride’s family. “Dowry and reception dinners are the root of all evils”, he remarks.
He is out to alter the course of history. And how? Through vigorous campaign he is trying to create awareness about the scourge of dowry which has made marriage a big problem in the Muslim community. A one-man army against the social menace, Falaki pushes his agenda with passion, compassion, humour, satire and style. He reaches out to the community through books, talks, songs and short films. Over the years he has stayed focussed on this task. For him life is a mission and not an intermission.
Under the aegis of the Socio Reforms Society (SRS), he has authored four books and made six short movies – all targeting the dowry system. “It is a crime against Islam, human rights and women’s rights. The only solution is to boycott such marriages. This is the biggest jihad of the times,” he says.
His latest movie, Khuddar, got 12,500 views on YouTube within three days of its release. Next month, Falaki is coming out with his fifth book – Nikah Ya Vivah. The message is pushed through in simple language covering all aspects of the issue.
Falaki accepts no excuses, only results. And he has a band of ten members committed to the cause. They go about delivering the message to youngsters in colleges and the community at large through the Friday sermons. But it is the short movies which are succeeding in pricking the conscience of the people.
In Khuddar, a drunk person is pushed out of the mosque and everyone beats him for his audacity to enter the Masjid in an intoxicated state. But the man raises some pertinent questions which leave the congregation red-faced. “If alcohol is prohibited in Islam so is usury, cheating, beggary and corruption.
Are not those who demand dowry corrupt. Why don’t you push all of them out of the masjid”, he asks.
In one of his books – Mard Bhi Bikte Hain .... Jahez Ke Liye (Men too are sold for dowry), Falaki tells how dowry is illegal according to the Quran and Hadith. Falaki is filled with a burning desire to eradicate dowry system. And his dedication is showing results. So far more than 2,500 persons have signed a pledge to boycott marriages where dowry or dinner is taken from the bride’s side whether by consent or demand. His plea: Say no to such marriages.