Odisha woman ostracised even after death: Villagers stall her cremation for two days
The villagers allowed the cremation on Friday evening only after the family paid Rs 1000 for ‘Mahaprasad’ from Jagannath temple.india Updated: Dec 30, 2017 15:41 IST
The body of a 75-year-old widow in Odisha could not be cremated for two days as villagers had ostracised the family because her son was doing manual scavenging despite being a Kshatriya, an upper caste.
The villagers relented on Friday evening and allowed the cremation only after the family paid Rs 1000 for Mahaprasad from Puri’s famous Jagannath temple to purge the so-called sin.
The incident took place at Nuaguda village in Malkangiri district.
The villagers refused to carry the body of Kamala Chital to the cremation ground as they had socially boycotted the family seven years ago.
The villagers were angry with family as Kamala’s son Laxman used to clean drains and cremate bodies for a living, which they considered demeaning for a Kshatriya.
Though Laxman died a few years ago, the ostracism continued.
After Kamala died, her daughter-in-law and grandson Rabindra Chital pleaded with the villagers to help them carry the body to cremation ground.
Local ward member Subhransu Parichha said he tried mediating with the villagers who insisted on payment of Rs 1000 as cost of Mahaprasad and another Rs 3000 for reinducting the Chitals into their clan.
Malkangiri district collector K Sudarshan Chakraborty said he has asked the BDO to inquire into the incident and submit a report.
In a similar incident last year, the body of a 65-year-old OBC woman was dragged in a cot by her brother in-law and sister in-law after villagers refused to lend help in carrying her mortal remains.
The villagers had ostracised the woman for marrying a tribal.