‘Honour killing’ victim’s body dumped as kin stay away

Bolangir: In a telling commentary on the tragic consequences of social stigma, the body of pregnant minor girl Gita Tanla, who was murdered by her father three days ago for marrying outside the caste, was thrown into a dumyard by the municipality officials as her relatives did not turn up to perform the last rites fearing social boycott.

No relatives of the girl lent a shoulder to her body to be taken to the funeral ground for the last rites fearing ostracization by the society as Gita had married a lower caste person and paid a heavy price for it.

Even though the government had implemented the ‘Harischandra Yojana’ to provide for funeral of unclaimed bodies, neither the civic body nor the district administration made any attempt to ensure the last rites are performed for the victim. The municipality, which threw the body after post-mortem, simply passed the buck to the district administration.

“As far as I know, it is supposed to be done by Sub-collector and EO jointly. Throwing away the body in a dumping yard is not fair,” Santosini Behera, Bolangir Municipality chief, said.

On the other hand, the grandmother of the victim, who was a silent spectator of the crime, prayed to God to punish her accused son Kailash Tanla.

“May Kailash meet the same fate as my granddaughter. Many are eloping with persons of other caste. What a blunder she had committed,” said Mem Tanla, the victim’s grandmother, recalling the brutal scene.

Accused Kailash, who fled the spot soon after committing the crime, is still at large. Police are on their toes to nab him.

“All police stations have been alerted and information about the accused is being collected from different sources,” Makaru Sahu, ASI (GRP) said.

Kailash had strangulated her daughter to death near Balangir railway station late on Tuesday for marrying a person of another caste.

Reports said that the girl, Gita Tanla (17), daughter of Kailash Tanla of Khuntsamlei in Patnagarh sub-division of the district, fell in love with a boy Naresh Tandi of Sradhapur under Bongamunda police limits while working in a brick kiln in Vijayawada.

Later, the couple left the brick kiln and worked in a poultry farm. But Gita’s father was opposed to their relationship as the boy belonged to a different caste.

Things took an ugly turn after Gita became pregnant and came back home with Naresh. Naresh’s family members did not accept their relationship.

On May 20, Gita was driven out of Naresh’ house. This further angered Kailash, who hatched a plot to eliminate her.

In an effort to save Gita from her son’s wrath, Mem had gone into hiding at her daughter’s in-laws’ place. But Kailash reached there and tricked them into accompanying him before killing his daughter near the Bolangir railway station.