Indian Family Tortures and Kills Couple After Daughter Marries Lower Caste Man

We have another shocking honor killing. The murder of a couple identified as Asha and Yogesh occurred outside Delhi when the family of Devi took revenge for her marrying a man from a lower caste. Even after his arrest, her uncle Omprakash Saini, proclaimed “I’m not sorry. I would punish them again if given a chance.” The bodies showed signs of torture before they were killed.

Neighbors listened to the couple being tortured and ultimately killed through the night. Only one man tried to intervene and was beaten. He said that he heard Asha begging them to spare her husband, saying “Kill me, but please don’t hurt him.”

Her father and uncle were arrested and the police are seeking others.

Some of those interviewed had a curious view of the injustice. The mother, Meera Devi, insisted “[i]f they wanted to kill their daughter, that’s okay. But they shouldn’t have killed our boy.”

For the full story, click here.

20 thoughts on “Indian Family Tortures and Kills Couple After Daughter Marries Lower Caste Man”

  1. I wear a bindi and have applied one on my children and husband on holidays and other occasions. You people are as ignorant as they come. 1st-the caste system is alive and well in the minds of many Indians. Fact. 2nd-the bind has nothing to do with it. It denotes for the woman that she is married. If it a color other than red,it’s like eye-shadow,a cosmetic to match the clothes. Marks on the forehead of men are lovingly applied by wives and mothers as blessings on birthdays or holidays ,engagements,weddings,trips to the temple, prayers,any kind of devotions,fasts,and countless worship services. Hindus and Sikhs are very devout and the mother is the de-facto spiritual in-home religious director who makes sure her family follows the proper rituals.It’s good of Isabel Darcy to say nothing since she obviously knows so little. Honor killings are very rare but in a population of over a billion,fanatical abberations happen.After all,America has it’s share of people who dance in churces with snakes and have 20 wives and other such oddities.

  2. I’m disheartened that so many seem unable to now read the word “torture” without referring to Bush’s War On Terror fiasco’s (and then trying to blame the current administration for not turning US Government officials over The Hague). None of that has SHIT to do with this.

    Also, the pinal gland has exactly JACK SHIT to do with the “third eye” of Indian folklore.

  3. Isabel Darcy,

    Fools suffer without knowledge or with the knowledge they think they possess.

    See the Pinal Gland:

    What is a little-known, pea-sized gland revered by metaphysicians for millennia and nicknamed the third eye or the seat of the soul? It is the pineal gland, located in the middle of the head. a masterful position in regulating human function.

  4. I live way outside DC and take the MARC train into Union Station. There are many Indian passengers who probably work in the high tech, defense industries in the area.

    A lot of them (male and female) wear caste marks (the dots) on their foreheads. These are not uneducated people and they are in the U.S. I know they have a right to exercise their religious principles, but am really tempted to tell them that in the US we don’t recognize castes and that the whole concept of castes is totally inimical to everything America stands for. Of course, I say nothing.

  5. Mike Appleton

    “… For reasons which I do not pretent to understand, he has failed in that duty. Therefore, his presidency is a failure even should he succeed in fulfilling his entire legislative agenda.”


    I don’t know how Jill feels about the Obama presidency but I agree with every single one of your words quoted above. I honestly believed he would restore the rule of law and thus was a man of strong character and honor … he fooled me completely. I no longer know what kind of man he is and, quite frankly, I don’t care.

    Last night I started to watch his Oval Office Address and after 2 minutes found myself full of the same kind of disgust Bush used to generate. I turned off the television knowing that I no longer looked to Obama for leadership on anything … in fact, as with Bush, I no longer trust anything the man says or does.

  6. Back in the 50s/60s ‘Merka, when a feller fell fur a gal that was lower caste, they juss done themselfs in by a’jumpin’ in a dirty ol’ river n’ savin’ the family members the trouble of wackin’ ’em.

    “Patches my darlin’ of old Shanty Town…but a girl from that place would just bring me disgrace”

    “It may not be right but I’ll join you tonight, Patches I coming to you.”

  7. James M., thanks for the link. I guess I should say we need to cut then some slack. After all, it’s only 1932.

    Jill, you are absolutely correct. This Administration has effectively ratified Bush/Cheney torture policies. As a result, we are not able to rely upon the law of torture. Instead, we are left to trust only in the good faith of whoever occupies the White House from time to time. But the Constitution was intended to prevent a tyrannical executive, regardless of the degree of its benevolence. In my view, the most important duty undertaken by Pres. Obama, and the principal reason he got my vote, was restoration of the rule of law. For reasons which I do not pretent to understand, he has failed in that duty. Therefore, his presidency is a failure even should he succeed in fulfilling his entire legislative agenda.

  8. Blouise,

    I am truly heart broken at what our nation has done. We have tortured many times before as you point out. But under bushcheney torture became our systematic policy. Obama’s refusal to prosecute for torture and murder, coupled with his continuation of torture has, in effect, codified torture into our laws. In addition, popular culture has codified the “rightness” of torture into our hearts and minds.

    It is the silence of good people who have allowed this to happen. Under bushcheney good people on the right justified torture because it was keeping them safe. They believed bushcheney were good guys just trying to protect America. So instead of standing up to torture, it was justified, not by evil people, but by good people–people whom I doubt would normally justify such things in other circumstances. I had truly hoped that the many people who DID oppose torture under cheneybush would continue that forceful opposition under Obama. However, this has not been the case. Again, it has been the refusal of good people to act that has allowed torture in our nation to continue and go unpunished.

    I do not think enough good people understand the consequences of ignoring the govt.’s ability to torture. I don’t think we realize what it does to our individual spirit nor what it means that our own govt. engages in such evil. The consequences of this are profound. This is a terrible power that we have handed over to our govt. Whoever said, “all it takes for evil to flourish is for good men to do nothing” was only too correct. It is my hope that good men and women will stop being in denial, stop making excuses and stop this govt. right now before we as a nation are completely lost.

  9. The company I work for currently is heavily involved with outsourcing work to India. I support a team over there & have had a chance to discuss life in general and comparisons both ways. They all are pretty clear that there really is no caste system in India! And nobody ever paid much attention to it anyway! Evidence be damned!

    Since the folks I deal with are all well educated I assume they may be a bit embarrassed by this sort of thing & it may only matter to a dwindling number of folks there.

  10. Kay – my maternal grandmother came from Sweden & had some French ancestors. The King brought in French engineers to help with mining projects & some stayed. Maybe yours came with that wave?

    Still would have been a heck of a hike. If you ever drive through the middle of the US, particularly the flat spaces like Nebraska, South Dakota, Kansas & think on a good day a wagon train could make 30 miles its astonishing what people will do to get out of wherever they were!

  11. Jill,

    “… Yes, so glad to see how different civilized nations are from other nations in the world.”


    Remember, back in the day, when we could count ours as one of the civilized nations in the world?

    David Hackett Fischer in “Washington’s Crossing” wrote that leaders in both the Continental Congress and the Continental Army resolved that the War of Independence would be conducted with a respect for human rights. This was all the more extraordinary because these courtesies were not reciprocated by King George’s armies. Indeed, the British conducted a deliberate campaign of atrocities against American soldiers and civilians. While Americans extended quarter to combatants as a matter of right and treated their prisoners with humanity, British regulars and German mercenaries were threatened by their own officers with severe punishment if they showed mercy to a surrendering American soldier. Captured Americans were tortured, starved and cruelly maltreated aboard prison ships.

    Washington decided to behave differently. After capturing 1,000 Hessians in the Battle of Trenton, he ordered that enemy prisoners be treated with the same rights for which our young nation was fighting. In an order covering prisoners taken in the Battle of Princeton, Washington wrote: “Treat them with humanity, and let them have no reason to Complain of our Copying the brutal example of the British Army in their treatment of our unfortunate brethren…. Provide everything necessary for them on the road.”

    That particular view on a civilized United states of America lasted until 2001, when, once again, we were attacked on our own soil and under the leadership of the Bush administration we were no longer required to be concerned for “humanity”.

    Well, we may no longer be able to count ourselves among the civilized nations of the world but at least we have the memory of what we once were.

  12. Here is how a civilized nation conducts torture (well, just a few, lesser techniques: “Excerpts from the UN “Joint Study on Global Practices in Relation to Secret Detention in the Context of Counter-Terrorism,” February 2010…

    Outside of the specific “high-value detainee” programme, most detainees were held in a variety of prisons in Afghanistan. Three of these are well-known: a secret prison at Bagram airbase, reportedly identified as “the Hangar” [See also the interview with Murat Kurnaz (annex II, case 14)], and two secret prisons near Kabul, known as the “dark prison” and the “salt pit”. During an interview held with the experts, Bisher al-Rawi indicated that, in the dark prison, there were no lights, heating or decoration. His cell was about 5 x 9 feet with a solid steel door and a hatch towards the bottom of it. He only had a bucket to use as a toilet, an old piece of carpet and a rusty steel bar across the width of the cell to hang people from. All the guards wore hoods with small eye holes, and they never spoke. Very loud music was played continuously. He also indicated that he had been subjected to sleep deprivation for up to three days and received threats…” (See Andy Worthington for the full account.)

    Of course there are those “suicides” at Gitmo where detainees beat themselves up, hung themselves, and then stuffed rags down their throats. (See Seton Hall law school for this account.) Yes, so glad to see how different civilized nations are from other nations in the world.

  13. No one involved seems to be sorry. So I’m not sure why I should care that a bunch of people who consider this an acceptable tradition indulge in it.

    I assume that at some point the survivors, if there are any, will learn to act like civilized human beings.

  14. When it’s torture followed by murder, I take the president’s advice to heart and look forward, not backward. Has he been there to pressure their govt. to give them a pass from all prosecution or even investigation? I sure hope so or he might look like a hypocrite.

  15. It is too bad that it is so hard for people to move away. My ancestors lived in a rural area of Sweden. Life was hard there but apparently you could get land on the edges of the valleys just be clearing it. Someone searched our family tree and found out that two of our ancestors were actually from France. Their marriage was disapproved of there so they walked to Sweden. I figured out that if they walked three miles per hour, 40 hours per week it would take only 6 weeks to walk from France to Sweden. Maybe that is too optimistic but lots of people walk the Appalachian trail from Florida to Maine in one summer.

  16. he mother, Meera Devi, insisted “[i]f they wanted to kill their daughter, that’s okay. But they shouldn’t have killed our boy.”

    And Justice for whom?

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