Mumbai, Feb. 26: Manohar Gangurde, an unemployed 26-year-old, committed suicide yesterday by swallowing poison as he could no longer bear the “taunts and torture’’ by his wife of three years, Sunanda, and her family members.
P. Gadkari, investigating officer at Nashik Road police station, said a case under Section 306 (inducing suicide) has been lodged against Sunanda, who is missing. “Investigations are on and we are trying to get to the bottom of the case, which after preliminary inquiry looks like one of harassment leading to death,’’ he said.
All hell reportedly broke loose when Manohar, a Nashik resident, lost his job last year. “She (Sunanda) would not allow any physical contact between them and would go and stay at her mother’s house in Mumbai for months on end,’’ a constable at the police station said.
“She would then come back and torture him along with her brother and mother. In fact, only seven days back, Manohar had filed a missing persons complaint after he received no news from his wife and son,’’ he added.
The husband is thought to have consumed poison after Sunanda refused to return. He died on his way to the hospital.
Inquiries have revealed that Manohar approached the Purush Haq Samiti — an association of harassed husbands — three months ago with a complaint against his wife.
Advocates associated with the tortured men’s association in Nashik and Sangli say Manohar’s case is not unusual. Founder members of the Samiti, which has branches in 13 states, say such cases will recur if laws that are meant to protect women but are instead “loaded against men’’ are not changed.
“It is most unfortunate,’’ said Balasahib Madhukar Patil, an advocate and founder member of the organisation.
“We started with 10 members in 1996 and today we have 9,000 active members. We have received 9,834 complaints so far. And the cases just increase every day.’’
At the Samiti’s Mumbai office, Bhimrao Laksman Buddhiwant, secretary of the zonal wing, says: “Every day I receive two to three cases. I have around 1,000 cases with me and they keep piling up. Maybe it has something to do with liberalism and women’s emancipation.’’
Another member, Prem Nath Pawar, says women have learnt how to “misuse’’ the various women’s protection laws. “The dice is loaded in their favour. Once the women file a case, the men are at the receiving end. There is nothing we can do though the police will tell you, and this is supported by our own research, that 95 per cent of the cases turn out bogus.’’