Who is to blame for Koly's misfortunes?
Koly ends up in a series of unfortunate situations. Who can be blamed for her misfortune Her parents? The Mehtas?Society?Koly herself? Or do all these factors work together to influence her life? Is it possible to root out one cause for her misfortune? Conversely, who can be credited for the good turn Koly's life eventuallty takes?
It's a challenge for me to criticize anyone who is compelled to become a child bride. I think the tone of this statement probably tells you where I think the blame lies for Koly's predicament. I think social conditions play a large role in her fate, as it is cultural conditions that dictate the payment of dowry for brides as well as allowing child marriage to take place. Koly's parents were overwhelmed with finances, causing them to broker the marriage. Yet, they have to accept some blame for prioritizing economics over nurturing their child. To a certain extent, one can empathize with their plight, yet it still does not absolve them from some level of responsibility. Her mother in law deserves a great deal of blame for abusing Koly and then abandoning her (which turned out to be a good thing). This, too, is custom Indian tradition which dictates that a daughter in law is at the behest of her in laws, often setting the stage for unlimited abuse and cruelty. It is difficult to identify one particular agent for Koly's misfortune, as social elements converge with human misdeeds.
In terms of her good fortune, Koly is the benefactor of chances and positive human interaction with people who defy social convention. Her father in law who taught her how to read and bearing emotional pain for his own son's death as well as his daughter's marriage, was depicted as a good man. Raji defies Indian convention with his desire to love Koly for who she is. He works and strives to be acknowledged by her love and does not take her for granted nor treats her in a dismissive manner. Both of these characters have profound impact on her as men who defy culturally dictated notions of gender identity. One can argue that the fact she is abandoned and yet thrives in good fortune in Vrindavan, a sacred city, might have symbolic signficance for the good turn her life takes.