A ‘couple’ from Palaboni village in Jharkhand was fined Rs 25,000 by the village panchayat after they were found guilty of having an illicit relationship.
The panchayat further ordered that if the culprits —Salkhu and his sister-in-law —failed to pay up the fine, they would be subjected to ‘Choudol’.
Choudol is a barbaric punishment for those who engage in incest or marry within the same cast.
According this tribal law, the accused couple is made to bath naked in the village pond. The woman is then draped in a fishnet while the man is forced to remain stark naked. Both are then made to walk around the village and the villagers are free to torture them. Sometimes, they mutilate the private parts of the accused.
After three days of marathon meetings, on Saturday, Mongol Besra, the village headman, slapped the fine on Salkhu Murmu for having illicit relationship with his younger brother Tuhu Murmu’s wife. Salkhu was caught in a compromising position with Tuhu's wife. It was then that Tuhu put the matter before the panchayat.
Village sources said Choudol against Salkhu and his sister-in-law would be implemented early morning on Saturday, if they failed to pay the fine.