A woman in Bihar, India was executed in public after a local village panchayat (village administrative body) handed her a “death sentence” for having alleged extra-marital affair with a local youth.
The incident occurred at Asiyani village in Purnia district, more than 300 kilometres east of Patna, the capital of Bihar state, at the weekend but was reported by the local media only on Tuesday.
Media reports said the local Tiyarpara village panchayat took a serious notice of the “offence” after it was informed that the 32-year-old Bibi Shahzadi, a mother of three, was having extra-marital affair with a local youth. The victim’s husband works in a factory in Ludhiana (Punjab).
Soon after the matter became public, the village panchayat tried the victim at its court, and after finding her guilty of “illicit relationship”, sentenced her to death. Subsequently, she was beaten to death at the village court in the presence of local villagers as no one dared to protest. “She was executed in public but no one dared to oppose”, a local villager who witnessed the horrible scene told the local media.
Locals said the victim was an educated woman with a Maulvi degree (equivalent to intermediate degree) who had been helping the impoverished women by running a self-help group for them. Her group was imparting the poor women training in sewing and weaving to make them self-reliant.
Taking the matter seriously, the local police have ordered an investigation into the case to bring the culprits to book.
“We are investigating the case and culprits will not be spared at any cost,” the additional district superintendent of police, Purnia, Deepak Barnwal, who has been given charge of investigation, said on Tuesday.
The development comes close on the heels of another such diktat issued by another village council in the neighbouring Kishanganj district, who have declared to impose a heavy penalty on women found talking over mobile phones on the streets. In this case too, the local administration has begun investigation and declared to punish the “culprits” trying to enforce such orders on the villagers.