“The strained relationship between the two families had been getting better with each passing month since my marriage in early January this year. I don't know what came over Monica's family last night,” said an appalled Sonu Singh (28), the elder brother of Kuldeep (26).
A call centre executive with HCL's Noida office, Kuldeep was allegedly gunned down by his wife Monica's family members after she was made to meet with the same fate at the young couple’s rented accommodation in northwest Delhi's Ashok Vihar on Sunday evening.
“Things went awry between the two families after Monica - who belonged to the Gujjar community eloped with Kuldeep hailing from a Rajput background in 2006,” said a senior police officer from the investigation team.
The inter-caste marriage had brought censure to both families and pushed the discerning couple to move away from their native Wazirpur Village in northwest Delhi.
“We asked the girl to reconsider her choice when the matter was brought to our notice,” said Mahender Khari (70) Sarpanch of the Gujjar community at the Wazirpur Village. “When she refused, we advised them to move away to maintain peace in the village.”
The couple reportedly moved to west Delhi's Janakpuri soon after, but kept visiting Kuldeep's home every once in a while.
“Gradually, things started getting better between both households to the extent that Monica's family even visited Sonu's (Kuldeep’s brother) wedding about five months ago," Khari recalled.
According to Sonu, it was at his wedding that Monica's elder brother, Ankit hatched a meticulous plan to punish his sister and her husband for bringing dishonour to his home.
"Monica's family — especially her brother Ankit — suggested that since the couple couldn't stay at the village, they could at least stay near it. So we convinced my brother and his wife to rent a floor at Ashok Vihar," Sonu recalled.
Five months later, Ankit allegedly chose the night of his parents' anniversary to mete out justice to his errant sister and her husband.
“Monica's younger brother Shanky and his friend Suraj discovered that she had been murdered when they reached the couple's house to deliver some food,” the officer said.