A 22- year- old woman was allegedly burnt to death by her stepmother after the latter was bribed by a youth who was accused of having physical relationship with the woman.
A resident of Bharta village under Khargram Police Station in Murshidabad, the woman had an affair with the youth of neighboring village Jethia.
He allegedly had a physical relationship with the woman on the pretext of marrying her.
But when she conceived, the youth started avoiding her.
After the youth refused to marry the woman, the latter’s family lodged a complaint of rape against him. Khargram police arrested the youth but he got bail a few months ago as he is still a ‘minor’.
A source from the village said, “The youth wasn’t ready to marry the woman. Since she was in the advance stage of her pregnancy, it was not possible for her to go for an abortion. Frequent quarrel used to break out between the woman and her stepmother over the issue of pregnancy.”
It is alleged that the stepmother used to misbehave with the deceased and her brother and also beat them up over trivial issues.
The deceased’s brother said, “Yesterday (Sunday) afternoon when my sister was sleeping in the bedroom, our stepmother entered her room and poured kerosene on her.
She then set my sister on fire and locked the room from outside. When my father heard her cries, he rushed to her aid. In the process he was also injured.”
Locals admitted them to Kandi sub-divisional hospital where the woman succumbed to her injuries. Her father has been referred to Burdwan Medical College and Hospital with 30% burn injuries.
The brother added, “Today (Monday) we came to know that the accused youth’s father had paid my stepmother a hefty amount to kill my sister.”
When asked, Murshidabad SP Humayun Kabir said, “We have already ar rested the deceased’s stepmother on charges of murder. Officers are interrogating her to know the motive of the murder. The girl’s body has been sent for an autopsy.”