Man gets life, mother-in-law 10 years for dowry death
In a landmark judgment in a dowry death case, a Patiala court on Wednesday sentenced a man to life imprisonment for abetting the suicide of his wife. The victim’s mother-in-law was sentenced to 10-year imprisonment.
The woman, Sumandeep Kaur, consumed a poisonous substance after only five months of marriage due to persistent demands for dowry from her husband, Gurwinder Singh, a resident of Gajewas village, and his mother Harjeet Kaur.
The sentence in such cases is generally imprisonment of 7-10 years. Harpreet Kaur Jeevan, additional district and session judge at Patiala, noted in a 46-page judgment that the victim was harassed continuously after marriage, despite having met several demands of the husband’s family.
The wedding took place on November 28, 2008. Sumandeep swallowed a poisonous substance at her in-laws’ house on May 6, 2009. The judge also noted that the victim was left untreated even when she consumed poison. Even her parents were not informed.
“The girl’s parents were informed through a mediator. The parents were told that their daughter was in pain,” the judge observed.
According to Sumandeep’s family members, though they spent more than Rs 40 lakh on the marriage, her in-laws demanded Rs 20 lakh just two days before the wedding for buying a Toyota Fortuner for the groom. The victim’s father said the groom’s family was also given 260 gm of gold and 100 gm of silver.
Additional public prosecutor Sanjeev Batra, the government counsel in the case, said the judge taking note of the greed displayed by Gurwinder and his family decided on the punishment.