55-Year-Old Woman Stripped in Tarn Taran: Punjab High Court Recalls 'Draupadi's Cheerharan' in Shock

55-Year-Old Woman Stripped in Tarn Taran: Punjab High Court Recalls 'Draupadi's Cheerharan' in Shock

Justice Sanjay Vashishtha took suo motu cognizance of this "barbaric and shameful incident" through media reports, treating it as a public interest litigation.

New Delhi- The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Monday took serious note of an appalling incident in Tarn Taran, where a 55-year-old woman was reportedly assaulted and publicly humiliated by her son's in-laws. The court drew a stark parallel, likening the brutality to the harrowing tale of 'the dismemberment of Draupadi on the orders of the Kauravas in the Mahabharata'.

In Tarn Taran, Punjab, the victim, a 55-year-old woman, endured the humiliation after her son married against his family's wishes. Following the elopement, tensions escalated, leading to this deplorable act.

The Mooknayak reached out to the victim's sister-in-law, who resides nearby. Describing the events, she revealed, "The couple had been in love for seven years. Five years ago, the girl even visited our home with her Aadhar card. However, her family intervened, involving the village Panchayat, and took her back home. Five years ago, her family coerced her into filing a police complaint against our son. Although he was later released by the authorities." The situation worsened when the girl's marriage was fixed with another boy on March 9 this year. The girl didnt want to marry any other person so she informed about her wedding to her lover who was away for work.

The woman continued, " At that time, our son was away. On February 24, the couple eloped, unbeknownst to us. When her family discovered this, they gave a complaint at the police station . Our boy called us but he abruptly ended the call, and then we came to know that both had eloped and got married"

The family members searched and found them but the couple refused to return as they were afraid that they would face repercussions if taken home. On March 9, they got married in court with the girl's family present, who even blessed them. Later, they resumed their respective jobs. The woman told The Mooknayak, " My sister-in-law had met her daughter-in-law and she bought some clothes for her as the girl hadn't clothes because she had eloped from her home".

"On March 31, my sister-in-law was showing those new clothes to some of the relatives. Suddenly, some people from the daughter-in-law's families including her mother and two brothers, and their friends, knocked on the door. Despite initially claiming to only want to talk, they forcibly entered, hitting her head against the door. The girl's mother and brother held her from both sides, tore her Kameez and took photos. They even made video clips," the woman recounted the horrifying incident in a shocked voice.

"No one intervened; bystanders watched, filming the spectacle. We were unaware, busy with guests at home. Nobody informed us of the incident. She was traumatized, avoiding contact and even attempted suicide out of shame. We sent her away to her sons, but even there, she feared. She has four children, two sons, and a daughter. If the daughter had been home that day, would those people have treated her similarly? They showed no regard for a woman's dignity. How could they do such a disgraceful act? A police case has been filed, and they'll be arrested soon, we just hope," she concluded.

Justice Sanjay Vashishtha took suo motu cognizance of this "barbaric and shameful incident" through media reports, treating it as a public interest litigation.

As the administrative judge of Tarn Taran sessions division, Justice Vashishtha presented the case before a division bench of Acting Chief Justice GS Sandhawalia and Justice Lapita Banerjee, issuing a notice of motion to the Punjab government.

-Translated by Geetha Sunil Pillai

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