Woman kills self, 5 daughters over husband's taunts

A woman committed suicide and killed her five daughters by setting herself and them ablaze in Uttar Pradesh's Gonda district, about 200 km from here, after she was deeply hurt over regular taunts by her husband for not bearing him a son.

The incident occurred at Divali village on Monday evening, according to police sources. Her husband, Jagdamba Prasad, has been taken into custody.

According to reports, 38-year-old Prema Devi had five daughters aged between three and 12. Her husband, who was a petty labourer, reportedly taunted her regularly for not bearing him a son.

Their neighbours said the two had fought over the issue a couple of days ago. Prema had then threatened to commit suicide. She was also thrashed by Jagdamba.

On Monday, villagers saw a fire engulfing the hut in which she lived with her children. They managed to put out the fire after much effort, but the hut had been destroyed. The six were found dead.

Circle officer Sukhbeer Singh said the woman had taken this extreme step after taunts from her husband for not bearing him a son. “We are investigating the matter,” said Singh. Prerna’s husband had been taken into custody and was being interrogated. The bodies had been sent for post-mortem.

This is not the first incident when a woman has lost her life for not being able to bear a son. In some cases, women had actually been killed by their husbands for the same reason.

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