Kathmandu, December 21
Acting Chairperson of National Women Commission, Bhagwati Ghimire, has demanded that the family of Laxmi Pariyar, who was physically assaulted and force-fed human faeces over witchcraft allegation before she was found dead in her house in Sano Bangthali -7, Kavre, a week ago, be provided justice as soon as possible.
Speaking at a press meet organised by Nepal International Dalit Solidarity Network today, Ghimire said women activists had been working hard for the welfare of women. “Ironically though, it seems violence against women is on the rise,” she said.
On December 9, locals physically assaulted 32-year-old Pariyar and allegedly force-fed her human faeces tying her to a pole on the premises of Suryodaya Secondary School. She was found dead in her house four days later.
According to the field report submitted by NIDSN, Hira Lama, a teacher had physically assaulted Pariyar with the help of his mother Kaili Tamang when she was returning home from a fair.
They reportedly took a coil of rope from Nirmaya Tamang, a shopkeeper near the school, and tied Pariyar to a basketball pole in the school ground. She was then beaten for practicing witchcraft. Pariyar’s second son Suman Pariyar,10, is believed to have witnessed the event.
“Hira Lama, his mother and Nirmaya Tamang had tortured and fed feces to my mother. They tied my mother with a rope and started beating her with a stick. I tried to rescue my mother but was threatened severely,” said Suman.
According to Suman, Hira Lama used to threaten his family time and again. During the second Constituent Assembly elections, his uncle had been badly beaten by Hira. “Hira Lama had assembled all the villagers to prove that my mother was a witch.
He repeatedly kicked my mother in her chest. No one tried to stop the violence. Eventually, Shanta didi put a stop to it. I untied my mother and helped her along but on the way Hira came back and started assaulting her again,” Suman shared. Police have since arrested four in connection with the incident.
Komal Gahatraj, a member of NIDSN, said Laxmi had been assaulted only because of her Dalit caste. “Earlier, the alleged had lodged a false complaint with the police and thus made her pay a fine of Rs 6,000 for hurting Nirmaya’s buffalo.”
Police had earlier arrested the victim’s husband Milan Pariyar as a suspect although he was known to be in Kathmandu at that time.