NASHIK: The Malegaon police on Friday registered a case to probe allegations that the Nathpanthya Davri Gosavi jat panchayat ostracised 10 Nashik families four years ago after a girl had married a relative from her own community against the wishes of her family.
The ‘ostracised’ families are related to the woman’s husband, Sagar Rajkapoor Shinde. It was the father of the woman, Hema Sagar Shinde, who allegedly approached the panchayat. The Kakhurdi police station in Malegaon tehsil registered the case on a complaint by the couple.
The couple took the help of a member of the NGO Andhashraddha Nirmoolan Samiti (ANS), Krishna Chandgude, to seek action against the panchayat.
According to Ms Shinde, her family had arranged for her to be married to an individual in whom she was not interested on April 15 2012. When she declined, she was allegedly threatened by her family and beaten up.
She then contemplated suicide by throwing herself in front of a train. While waiting for the train, however, she called up Mr Shinde and told him her quandary. When he appeared empathetic, she asked him whether he would marry her. He agreed and she went to his house in Malegaon.
Mr Shinde’s father immediately called up Ms Shinde’s family in Pune and informed them that she was with them. Later, Ms Shinde’s grandfather Gangaram Shegar, uncles Babaji and Narayan, father Subhash — all residents of Daund in Pune - and cousins Sagar, Suresh and Nitin Shegar arrived at Mr Shinde’s home.
According to Ms Shinde, her cousins began abusing her now-husband’s family and threatened them with dire consequences if the couple were to get married. Her brothers and uncles allegedly tried to strangle her with her scarf but her husband’s family and villagers prevailed and she survived, according to the complaint.
On April 17 2012, the family went to the jat panchayat Pune and urged the body to ostracise Mr Shinde and his relatives. Mr Chandgude said that the Maharashtra government had made a law on jat panchayats and sent it the Centre for its sanction.