Jaipur: A shocking incident of a family being subjected to social boycott in Rajasthan's Bhilwara district has come to the fore.
In an extreme case of ostracisation, a young couple, belonging to the same community, had to bear the brunt of panchayat members for tying the knot.
The man, Mahaveer Sharma of Bala Nagar, got married to Sampati Sharma in Jhabua court in Ratlam in 2012. However, the girl’s family did not approve of the love marriage and used their influence on the caste panchayat leaders to boycott the boy's family.
When the matter was brought to the caste panchayat, it ordered the villagers to ostracise the man and his entire family as well.
Locals were asked to sever all relations with the family and were also warned of dire consequences. The boy's father's business was badly hit and the family was not even allowed to use the public tap to fill water.
“My life has been hell for the last six years because the girl’s family was against our marriage. I filed a complaint through court but the police have not taken any action so far,” Mahaveer said.
In a bid to continue to live in the same district with some dignity, Mahaveer’s father Madanlal Sharma, a halwai by profession, agreed to serve punishment and pay a hefty fine.
As punishment, the caste panchayat did not go easy on him and ordered Mahaveer's father to keep the shoes of each community member on his head for 15 minutes and pay Rs 1.51 lakh as fine.
However, the caste panchayat after collecting the fine money backtracked on its promise and the family continues to face social boycott till date.
The trauma faced by the family reached its peak when one of the daughters-in-law died on June 13. The police are yet to take cognisance of the incident.
Father Madan Lal Sharma said, “The panchayat members are dabang. Despite collecting the fine they have not revoked the social boycott. The trauma of living in isolation, financial constraints and the caste panchayat’s betrayal was too much for one of my daughter-in-law who died on June 13.”