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Heroine bride:No to dowry.

Byline: MARK ELLIS

A BRIDE who called off her wedding and had her groom arrested after refusing his dowry demands has become a national heroine in India.

Nisha Sharma was ready to join her 2,000 guests when her brother called to say the groom's family were insulting her father and demanding pounds 16,000.

Nisha, 21, called police to have the groom arrested under 40-year-old laws banning dowries.

She said: "He wanted material things, not me."

The computer software engineering student has since been praised as a role model and been flooded with fresh marriage proposals - without dowries.

She told a paper: "I want all girls to get inspiration from me saying 'no'."

Laws have failed to stop dowries and some families abort female foetuses or kill girls at birth fearing crippling dowry costs.

Rising consumerism has made grooms' families greedier than in the past.

The family of the groom, who was in jail for his would-be wedding night, declined to comment.

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BRAVE: Nisha
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:May 16, 2003
Words:167
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