Heart attack theory falls flat, Sirsa girl ‘killed for honour’ : The Tribune India

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Heart attack theory falls flat, Sirsa girl ‘killed for honour’

Father, brother confess to crime in police custody

Heart attack theory falls flat, Sirsa girl ‘killed for honour’

Deceased Saravjeet’s mother and grandmother (lying on cot) at the family’s house at Nijadela Kalan in Sirsa. Tribune photo: Vicky



Tribune News Service

Geetanjali Gayatri

Sirsa, June 19

In the narrow lanes of Nijadela Kalan, the talk of an honour killing had reduced to mere whispers and the dust had settled on the “mysterious” death of 27-year-old Saravjeet Kaur. Her family had heaved a sigh of relief as the “heart attack” theory prevailed. However, that theory was shattered today when her father and brother, who were taken into custody by the police, confessed to “strangling her for a love they disapproved of”.

They have been booked for murder and disappearance of evidence. Saravjeet had met Karan, a youth of the same caste (Kamboj) from adjoining Ramgaria village, through a common friend and “fell in love”. He worked at a pesticide shop nearby and the two, in a relationship for nearly five years, would have long conversations when the deceased could afford to speak on a mobile phone Karan had “gifted” her.

In his confession to the police, Saravjeet’s father Desraj, alias Jagdish (50), said he had unsuccessfully tried to dissuade his daughter from talking to Karan. While his caste wasn’t a problem, Karan’s poor economic condition was. Jagdish confiscated one gifted phone before Karan gave her another. Police sources say Jagdish even visited Karan’s house to warn him, but neither Karan nor Saravjeet heeded—Until the June 3 night when Jagdish got to know his daughter was still using a phone.

In his statement to the police, Jagdish said when Saravjeet refused to hand over the phone to him, he and his 28-year-old son Gurpreet allegedly strangled her. “The father-brother duo has been booked under Section 302 and 201 of the IPC. We have recovered the girl’s mobile phone and have asked Karan to join the investigation,” says Vikrant Bhushan, Sirsa Superintendent of Police.

Back in the village, Saravjeet’s mother Jaswinder Kaur, sitting on a charpoy next to her ailing mother-in-law, is blissfully ignorant that her “on-the-run” husband and son have confessed to the crime. “As many mouths, as many stories. Only we know the pain. She died a natural death and I am full of grief,” she quips, her eyes hardly teary.

She swears “Saravjeet died after a charpoy fell on her during a storm”. Asked if she has her daughter’s picture or any of her belongings, she denies it emphatically. “In our village and community, we dispose of the belongings of the dead,” she remarks even as the villagers deny any such practice.

Though the “honour killing” seems a well-kept secret, all in the village know a young girl has died. Ask them how, they quickly take a step back saying “don’t know much”. “We were not in the village,” is the common refrain. However, amidst this conspiracy of silence, there are a few who speak in hushed voice on the condition of anonymity because it is “about the honour of the community”.

They talk of a boy “she was seeing”, saying something was fishy as the family chose to cremate her an hour before the time conveyed to them. But they won’t complain. “We don’t have evidence, but the girl was murdered. Each time she stepped out, her mother accompanied her. There is more to this death than meets the eye,” says a villager. They want sleeping dogs to lie but then, again, there is no perfect murder. In the village, Saravjeet is more alive in her death than while she was during her lifetime.

About The Author

The Tribune News Service brings you the latest news, analysis and insights from the region, India and around the world. Follow the Tribune News Service for a wide-ranging coverage of events as they unfold, with perspective and clarity.

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