Shakti Jewellers, Batticaloa

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Jewelry business was not flourishing too much during the civil war – not only due to the lack of money, but also because the Tamil Liberation Army had forbidden the dowry system. The dowry system was and is very problematic for the status of women in the society: The necessity to provide a huge dowry often makes baby girls less welcome. And as a better education makes a young woman suitable for grooms with an equal status, additionally to the costs of the education the expenses for an even higher dowry have to be taken into account.

I was not astonished when Tamil friends admitted, that “this was one good thing” the LTTE had tried to introduce.


  1. Thank you so much for your photos and stories. I appreciate you sharing your experiences and knowledge, providing insight regarding Sri Lankan society, customs and difficulties. Very interesting and informative. Vielen dank!

    1. Martha, you are welcome! For me my missions always were an occasion to listen and learn as well as to see and to make photographs. I think both is necessary, as photography alone can’t always tell the full story. And from our European perspective it’s only too easy to overlook the details that can determine lives in places as remote as the east coast of Sri Lanka.

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