‘Nisha hero of Class VI book , I’m one with no principles. Munish's name should be removed from text books
Sitting in his West Delhi home, Munish Dalal flips through a Class VI English textbook and stops at Chapter 14, titled ‘Man in jail over dowry case’.
It reads “A man was arrested from his Vikaspuri home after the family of his bride-to-be told the police that the groom’s family was demanding a large sum of dowry”.
The chapter in the book, published by the State Council of Education Research and Training (SCERT), talks about Dalal and the woman who “stood up to him”, Nisha Sharma.
“She became a national hero for standing up (against) dowry when she was misusing the law blatantly. Even schoolchildren throughout Delhi read about how I was a man with no principles,” Munish said, waving the book angrily.
After hearing the case for nine long years, a Greater Noida court on Wednesday acquitted Munish, his mother and aunt of the charges that they demanded Rs 12 lakh dowry, following which Nisha called off the marriage on the wedding day.
The court ruled that Nisha levelled false dowry allegations against Munish as she wanted to marry someone else.
Munish sees the chapter in the textbook as a symbol of the public humiliation he suffered. “The court may have ruled in my favour, but my road to redemption is long. The first step is to have this chapter removed. How could they put this in when the court still had not given a verdict, is also a question I want answered,” he said.
Education minister Arvinder Lovely told Newsline that SCERT books have been phased out from curriculum in all schools of Delhi. “We use only NCERT books now,” he said.
Dalal married in 2008, has two children and works with a private company. He said he is happy that the court has come out with the truth, but the incident has left deep scars.
“On May 9, 2003, I had a wonderful life ahead of me. I was to be married, a government job was in the pipeline, and my family was happy. But my baraat was turned away,” Munish said.
That same night, a police complaint of dowry was filed against Munish, after which he was jailed for nearly two months.
“The next nine years, I watched the woman who ruined me and my family become the darling of the country. She appeared on talk shows, won awards, documentaries were made on her. I lost my friends, job prospects and peace of mind. There is much she has to answer for,” Munish said.
Meanwhile, D D Sharma, Nisha Sharma’s father, said: “We are not convinced with the court’s decision. We will consult our legal advisors, and probably appeal against the order.”