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Dowry torture slur on in-laws

Aug. 25: A 20-year-old woman lodged a police complaint on Saturday alleging that her father-in-law had forced her into a physical relationship with him and her husband and in-laws had tortured her demanding dowry.

The resident of North 24-Parganas said in her complaint that she was forced to leave her in-laws’ house in Jalpaiguri on May 10 and since then, she had been staying with her parents.

“On May 16, 2012, I got married. Soon after the marriage, my husband, and particularly my in-laws, forced me to get Rs 20,000 from my parents and started torturing me. I was forced to pay the money,” the woman told a news conference in Jalpaiguri today.

The woman’s husband and his father sell chicken at a market in Jalpaiguri.

“After a few months, my father-in-law asked for Rs 20,000 again. I told my husband about it but he kept quiet. As I could not pay the amount, my father-in-law forced me to get into a physical relationship with him and he kept torturing me. On May 10, he asked me to leave the house,” said the woman.

She added that her mother-in-law was ill and she mostly stayed in her room.

“My husband used to go out on work. My father-in-law would take the opportunity to rape me at regular intervals,” she said.

In the police complaint, however, the woman did not mention rape.

The woman’s mother, who accompanied her today, said her husband and his family stopped her daughter from interacting with them. “They took away her cell phone and destroyed the SIM card to stop her from talking to us. We want police action against all the accused,” she said.

The woman’s mother-in-law denied the allegations: “We suspect that my daughter-in-law has an affair with someone near her father’s house. That is why she is raising such baseless allegations. We never forced her to leave the house. She left on her own.”

Ashish Roy, inspector-in-charge of the local police station, said: “We have received the complaint and are conducting an investigation. If anyone is found guilty, necessary steps would be taken according to the law.”