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From Wife to Sister ; A village panchayat decided

A village ‘panchayat’ near Rohtak in Haryana has directed a married couple to start staying as brother and sister as they are from the same ‘gotra’.

Satish Berwal of Kheri village in this district was married to Kavita, a resident of Bhagi village in Jhajjar district, three years ago. The couple also has a 10-month-old boy.

This decision was taken in the panchayat meeting that lasted over six-hours on Saturday at Kheri.

“Kavita is from Beniwal gotra whereas the groom is from Berwal gotra. In our village, people from these two gotras cannot marry each other as they are considered brother and sister. We have directed them to end their marriage and to start a relation of brother and sister,” said a panchayat official here on Sunday.

“Kavita is free to return to her parents’ house along with her son. We have given them an ultimatum of 28 days to follow this order and if they fail to adhere to deadline then strict action will be taken against them,” he said.

The panchayat has also directed Satish’s father Azad Singh to disown his son from all the property and belongings and to deposit Rs 300,000 in the name of his grandson in a bank.

Haryana panchayats are known for many notorious decisions related to inter-caste marriages.

Following this decision of the panchayat, tension prevailed in the village.

“We are keeping a close watch on the situation. So far we have not received any complaint. But still we are ready to control any emergency situation,” said a police official here.

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