Nandini Devi’s father and relatives protest outside SSP office on Wednesday. Picture by Bhola Prasad
Family members and neighbours of a 22-year-old woman — who was set on fire by her husband on January 14 and succumbed to her burns five days later — staged a demonstration in front of East Singhbhum SSP’s office in Sakchi on Wednesday, accusing police of slo-mo probe into what they claimed was murder for dowry.
The protesters from Bagbera, led by the victim’s father, later submitted a petition to SSP Amol V. Homkar, demanding arrests.
“My daughter Nandini had married Bunty (Singh) at Deori Mandir (in Tamar) in October 2013 after a year-long affair. They rented a house in Olidih, while her in-laws stay in Shastrinagar (near Kadma). Soon after marriage, his parents incited Bunty to ask for dowry, which led to frequent domestic tiffs,” said Prabhat Das.
The bereaved father added that Nandini often cried over phone after being tormented by her husband and in-laws.
“I could not see her unhappy and gave Rs 25,000 in two instalments in December and January. But, on January 14 night, my daughter called to say she was attacked. Bunty had doused her in kerosene while she slept and set her on fire. I rushed to Olidih and took her to Tata Main Hospital,” he said.
Nandini, who had suffered nearly 70 per cent burns died on January 19.
Das claimed that his daughter in her dying statement, recorded by Olidih police, had blamed Bunty for her condition. “We also submitted my daughter’s and son-in-law’s cellphones for investigations. It has been a month since and no arrests have been made. In fact, no arrest warrant has been sought either,” he said.
SSP Homkar said that city SP Karthik S. had been asked to look into the matter.
The latter said DSP, Patamda, had submitted his investigation report after which they had lodged a case under Section 302 (murder) of the IPC.
“Our investigations suggest the couple had a quarrel and Bunty Singh set Nandini Devi on fire. The husband is absconding. We will seek an arrest warrant against him soon,” Karthik S. said.