UP panchayat asks village to boycott rape victim's family

Decision taken after kin of accused dub woman's allegation as false

A panchayat in Uttar Pradesh’s Moradabad district, about 350 kilometres from here, ordered ‘social boycott’ of an alleged gang rape victim’s family, accusing them of making a false complaint to the police and thereby causing humiliation to the families of the alleged culprits.

According to reports, a woman in Kalyanpur village in the district had alleged that five men from the same village had gang raped her on Monday night.

The police had later arrested four of the five accused persons and sent them to jail and had launched a manhunt to nab the fifth culprit.

A caste panchayat was convened on Tuesday to discuss the matter after the families of the accused claimed that the complaint was false and that they had been implicated by the woman following a dispute over a piece of land.

After a few hours of deliberations, the panchayat concluded that the complaint was false and ordered socially boycott of the victim’s family.

“No one will invite them in social functions nor will attend their functions,” the caste panchayat decreed.

A police team, which visited the village on Wednesday, said that the woman remained firm on her allegations.

Panchayats in the state are known for their bizarre decisions to settle cases of sexual exploitation.

A few days back, a panchayat had imposed a fine of Rs50,000 on a 45-year old man, who had allegedly fathered a child through an illegitimate relationship with a 17-year old girl and settled the matter.

In this case, the panchayat also directed the man to pay monthly Rs 500 to the girl.
The child was left in the custody of the mother on the condition that she would hand him over to his biological father when he attains adulthood. It barred the girl from marrying until her son turned 18.

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