Pradeep Pattanayak

For Tapaswini Das, who sat in front of her husband’s house demanding acceptance by her husband and in-laws, the court’s order to let the couple stay together at a rented house for seven days is nothing short of a blessing in disguise. 

Demanding acceptance, Tapaswini, a native of Chhatrapur, had staged a sit-in in front of her in-laws’ house at Brahmanagar in Berhampur under a tent. She was in bridal attire all through. 

After a court’s judgment, the tent has been removed and the couple is presently living in the guest house of Aska Sugar Mill. 
The sub-divisional judicial magistrate (SDJM) court, Berhampur, had, on December 2, directed Tapaswini to stay with her doctor husband Sumit Sahu for seven days. The direction came in response to a petition filed by Tapaswini urging the SDJM to legalise her marriage and issue a direction to her in-laws to accept her.

The court also directed the couple to bury the hatchet within these seven days and make up mind to start a happy conjugal life.  
While the government has been directed to bear the cost of their stay in the rented accommodation, the court has asked Sumit to bear the entire cost of his wife’s food and other expenses. 

During their stay, none would neither interfere nor try to meet the couple. Following the court’s direction in letter and spirit, the administration has deployed a police team at the guest house for round the clock surveillance. 

“During their stay, they will be under the care of Aska police station IIC. The protection office will enquire about their wellbeing. And it is learnt that Sumit has also been granted leave,” informed Tapaswini’s advocate Pradeep Behera.

Similarly, Sumit’s advocate Saroj Kumar Patra said, “It is a family dispute. So the court has taken an initiative for the dispute to have a happy ending.”

Tapaswini had married Sumit in the court on September 7, 2020. After the marriage she even lived at Sumit’s house as his wife for six months. Later, her in-laws sent her to her parents’ house, promising her to get them married as per the vedic rites. Two different dates were also fixed for their marriage. Eventually, they reneged on their words.

Seeing no respite coming her way, she sought the help of Pramila Tripathy, a social worker. Thereafter, braving the chilling winter she launched a sit-in in front of Sumit’s house for as many as 11 days from November 22, staying in a tent. 

Since the matter was sub-judice, the police too could not do anything to pressurize her to call off the strike. 

“I am happy with the court’s decision. I wish the seven-day long stay should last till their seven births,” observed Pramila Tripathy. 

All eyes are now set on the guest house to see the couple riding off into the sunset.