A 31-year-old Dalit man has complained to the police that his in-laws have been harassing him with casteist slurs for the last five years.
The complainant, who works as a chef in a restaurant in the city’s western suburbs, said he has been in a relationship with a Brahmin woman for the last 10 years and got married early this year, despite opposition from her parents. He claimed she was being influenced by her parents, and had thus left him.
The Tardeo police, which registered a case on Monday, said the complainant’s father-in-law works as a driver while his mother-in-law is a school teacher. The man told the police that he and his (then) girlfriend had initially decided to get married in 2013. When his family visited the woman’s house, her parents allegedly forced them to leave.
According to his statement to the police, they allegedly said: “Tum neech log, Brahmin ki ladki se shadi karneka sapna dekh rahe ho (You lowly people are dreaming of marrying an upper caste girl).”
“Later, they even visited my sister’s house and threatened her. They told her to ask me to stay away from their daughter,” said the complainant.
He added that in August 2013, the woman’s relatives told his family: “Tum Brahmin ki barabari nahin kar sakte (you cannot match the status of Brahmin).” Then, in 2015, the family allegedly forcibly took the woman to Uttar Pradesh and got her married.
“Within months, she divorced her husband in UP and came to Mumbai. She then started asking my family members to help us get married,” the complainant told the police.
When the couple realised that the woman’s parents wouldn’t support their marriage, they went to the Bandra court and got married on February 7.
Since their marriage, the woman’s family members have been speaking ill of him and his family, due to which his wife decided to leave, the complainant claimed.
“In June, the woman came to the police station and lodged a complaint of harassment against her husband, which he claims she did under the influence of her family members,” said an officer from Tardeo police.
After the man filed a complaint on July 25, the Tardeo police booked the man’s in-laws under sections 506 (criminal intimidation) and 34 (common intention) of the Indian Penal Code, as well the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
No arrests have been made so far in the case.