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After Caste panchayat strips, thrashes woman, lover- 8 arrested in Jaipur

 

Eight held for stripping of woman, CM orders probe

TNN | Jul 24, 2012, 04.18AM IST

JAIPUR: A day after a married woman and her paramour were tied to a tree, stripped and severely beaten for nearly three hours before a crowd of 1,000 people under orders of a caste panchayat at area in Udaipur district, the police arrested eight men including the woman’s husband on Monday. The two were ‘punished’ for having an illicit affair by the panchayat, said police.

Chief minister Ashok Gehlot directed divisional commissioner to probe the matter and prepare a report in a week.

SP, Udaipur Hari Prasad Sharma told TOI that the woman’s husband Hamji Meena had stripped her half naked in front of villagers. “The woman had registered an FIR against 12 identified and several others unidentified people with the Sarada police station on evening. Of them eight have been arrested while the search is on for others,” Sharma said.

The officer said, “The eight men including Hamji, a former sarpanch Nandlal and five others were booked under Sections 147 (rioting), 149 (unlawful assembly), 365 (kidnapping), 323 (causing hurt), 342 (wrongful confinement), 354 (assaulting a woman to outrage her modesty) and 504 (breach of peace). A separate FIR has been lodged for attacking policemen who had gone there to rescue the couple.”

Police said 27-year-old Prakash Meena was having an affair with the 22-year-old woman living in the neighbourhood Limbat Falan near Kolan village in the area. Prakash and the woman had fled the village a fortnight ago. The villagers were looking for the couple and they found them near Keshiriyaji area in Udaipur.

The villagers brought them back and kept them confined throughout the night. “A panchayat was called on Sunday morning in which the woman’s husband and her in-laws were present. They demanded action against the two,” the officer said.

The villagers and half-a-dozen panchayat leaders gathered around 9.30 am. Soon, Prakash and the woman were tied to a tree.

Her husband stripped her and the youth in front of the crowd, and then cut their hair. The police came to know about the incident around 11.30 am and a team was rushed.

“When the cops reached the spot, the villagers surrounded them and started hurling stones. Some vehicles were damaged and two policemen sustained minor injuries,” he added.

The cops managed to untie the couple from the tree but could not take them out of the area. Later, they were taken to a school around 4 pm and then to the police station.

Chief minister Gehlot called the incident unfortunate. “No one has the right to take the law into their hands. The divisional commissioner has been asked to carry out a thorough enquiry into the incident,” said Gehlot.

Caste panchayat strips, thrashes woman, lover

TNN | Jul 23, 2012,

JAIPUR: A married woman and her paramour were tied to a tree, stripped half-naked and severely beaten up for nearly three hours before a crowd of 1,000 people under orders of a caste panchayat at Sarada area in Udaipur district on Sunday. The two were ‘punished’ for having illicit relations, said sources.

The woman’s husband himself stripped the woman and the youth. Later their hair was cut. When a police team tried to intervene, the villagers hurled stones at them, injuring two cops. Acting fearlessly, the panchayat continued to discuss other penalties on the couple till late evening. Later the police rescued them and took them to Sarada police station.

Sensing the seriousness of the matter, National Commission for Women chairperson Mamta Sharma said that she would send a team to the village on Monday to look into the incident.

According to the police, 27-year-old Prakash Meena had an illicit relationship with a 22-year-old woman living in the neighbourhood. “She is a distant relative of his. While Prakash works as a labourer in the village, the woman’s husband was staying in Ahmedabad for the past few years. The woman has a three-year old daughter,” said SP, Udaipur, Hari Prasad Sharma.

The officer said that Prakash and the woman had fled from the village a fortnight ago. “The villagers were looking for the couple and they found them near Keshiriyaji area in Udaipur on Saturday evening,” said the officer.

The villagers brought them back and kept them confined throughout the night. “A panchayat was called on Sunday morning in which the woman’s husband and her in-laws were present. They were demanding action against the couple,” said the officer.

The villagers and half-a-dozen panchayat leaders gathered around 9.30 am. Soon, Prakash and woman were tied to a tree.

Woman’s husband Hamji Meena stripped her and the youth in front of the crowd. They then cut off their hair. The police came to know about the incident about 11.30 am and a team was rushed there.

“When policemen reached there, the villagers surrounded them and started hurling stones. Some vehicles were damaged and at least two policemen sustained minor injuries,” said an officer.

Though the police managed to free the couple they could not take them out from the spot. Later the couple was taken to first a government school around 4 pm and then to the police station.

“We have registered two cases against the woman’s husband, about six members of the panchayat and hundreds of villagers for attacking police team and outraging the modesty of the woman,” said the officer.

When asked why the panchayat continued till late evening, SP Sharma said that they were trying to restore law and order. “We will soon arrest the accused villagers,” he said.

Times View

There are legal ways to settle matrimonial disputes, but the dominance of caste panchayats and their diktats are turning out to be a major bane for the society at large. In the age of caste-driven politics, no party has shown the willingness to come out openly and minimise the role of such panchayats, whose principles are not only archaic but devastating for the society. The government should launch campaigns on the redundancy of such panchayats and urge people to seek the administration’s help in case someone violates norms. Bureaucrats must also take initiatives instead of toying the political line.

 

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