A week after the death of Pratibha Gurjar (22), who was reportedly electrocuted at her parents’ home in Bharatpur on July 27, her husband Devasheesh Meena (23) accused her family members of killing her after they found that the two had secretly married in a Delhi court in May.
Devasheesh produced a letter purportedly written by Pratibha to one of her friends in February, expressing fear that her father “could do anything with her.” The letter, a copy of which is with The Indian Express, is neither dated, nor signed.
While The Indian Express could not establish the veracity of the letter, Devasheesh claimed Pratibha wrote that letter to a friend in February and the friend gave it to him on Sunday, after learning of her death.
“Tell him that anything can happen to me…also WhatsApp him that Pratibha can neither meet nor talk (as) her family has stopped her from going anywhere,” the letter reads.
“Papa has clearly said that he will kill me…he was not joking. I don’t know what to do. I don’t know what might happen. Yesterday, Papa slapped me…he would have killed me but Di (sister) saved me somehow,” Pratibha purportedly wrote.
Pratibha then went on to say that her father yelled at her for marrying a boy from another caste (Meena).
“He was yelling (vicious abuses)…with great difficulty, mother stopped him.”
She also asked Devasheesh to seek help from Love Commandos, an online support group and helpline for couples facing threats of honour killings.
While the police said they were yet to get a complaint, Love Commandos’ Sanjoy Sachdev said the group had emailed and faxed every detail pertaining to the case to the offices of the Inspector General, SP and district collector.
The police, however, are yet to act on the matter. “We have not received any complaint. I have asked the boy to file an FIR and then we will probe the matter,” Bharatpur IG Biju George Joseph told The Indian Express.
The People’s Union for Civil Liberties condemned the “state inaction” on the matter.
“PUCL is shocked at the honour killing by her parents and the complete silence by the district police and administration shows their compliance. It is unbelievable nobody in the village got to know of even the cremation…after all there is a patwari, a sarpanch, the entire village administration,” PUCL national secretary Kavita Srivastava said.
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