An auto driver and his wife in Punjab’s Ludhiana allegedly drugged their two teenage daughters and threw them into a canal after suspecting them of having boyfriends, police said on Wednesday.
One of the girls – 15-year-old Jyoti – died while her sister Priti survived. Police have charged the parents Uday Chand and Laxmi with murder and attempted murder, and have launched a manhunt for the absconding suspects.
Sub-Inspector Davinder Sharma told HT that the girls – both students of Class 10 – returned home late on Monday night, confirming the parents’ suspicion of them having relationships without their approval.
“Her father offered them food laced with drugs. When they lost consciousness, their parents threw them in a canal,” Sharma said. “The parents tried to strangle Jyoti with a dupatta before throwing her into the canal.”
The girls were rescued from the Sidhwan canal near Barewal Bridge in Ludhiana a day later when passersby spotted the two girls floating in the water. They were rushed to the local civil hospital where Jyoti died, police said.
Police said Priti was initially evasive and furnished false names. She also told police that they were orphans and used to beg near a local temple and fell unconscious after eating some food offered by a stranger.
But this aroused the police’s suspicion. “The girls were not appearing to be beggars. When police counseled her, she narrated the incident,” said Sharma.
The family hails from Bihar and lives in a rented house in Ludhiana’s Barewal road, police said.