Families refuse bodies of women lovers in Bengal

Monday, February 28, 2011

KOLKATA - As in life, so in death. Nine days after two women committed suicide in West Bengal following the society’s refusal to accept their love for each other, their bodies are still lying unclaimed in a hospital morgue with their families reluctant to cremate them, police said Monday.

Swapna Mondal, 20, and Sucheta Mondal, 19, residents of Sonachura village in Nandigram area of East Midnapore district, fell in love a few years back, but faced a hostile reaction from the villagers.

The duo was tried in a village court, which forbade them from meeting each other. Sucheta was later married to a man in a distant village, said the police.

“Sucheta came back to her parent’s house Feb 19 and somehow managed to contact Swapna. Both of them went out of their houses in the night and committed suicide by consuming poison,” said Sub-divisional Police Officer (Haldia) Sushil Ganguly.

“Their bodies were recovered Feb 20 in the nearby paddy field, tied to each other at their waist. A suicide note recovered from Swapna mentioned ‘Please don’t get annoyed at me, I could not live without my love’,” he said.

“The bodies were recovered from a paddy field and sent to Tamluk district hospital for autopsy. Since then, the bodies are lying in the morgue as the family members have refused to take the bodies for performing the last rites.

“We have repeatedly approached the family members asking them to take the bodies but they have turned down our proposal. We will wait for a few more days and after that we will cremate the bodies like other unclaimed bodies,” Ganguly told IANS.

He, however, did not elaborate on why their families were unwilling to claim the bodies.

However, a senior police officer said: “The family members were forced by the village heads not to claim their bodies and perform the last rites in the village as same-sex relations are considered an offence in their society.”

Filed under: Accidents and Disasters

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