A shocking incident has been reported in which the Panchayat in Richa district, Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh, has issued a decree according to which a woman named Arshi has been asked to maintain marital relationships with both her husbands.
According to reports, Arshi approached Bareilly police several times after the Panchayat’s decision was forced on her, but the police were unwilling to take any action. This, however, compelled her to seek help from Nida Khan, a social activist who is also the president of the Hazrat Helping Society.
The case goes back to 2012 when Arshi reportedly married her first husband Laik, a resident of Bahedi district in Bareilly. Soon after the marriage, Arshi started being tortured for dowry. Three years into the relationship, Laik divorced Arshi and threw her and their young son out of his house. A few years later she remarried in 2017. Soon after, her first husband came back to claim their child.
Arshi, wanting to seek justice approached the police but since they refused to take any action, she reached out to the district Panchayat which in turn delivered a bizarre verdict. She was asked to spend 15-15 days with both her husbands. Outraged by this decision Arshi said, “I am a woman, not an object that can be divided”.
Arshi claimed that regardless of her repeated complaints before and after the incident the police refused to take any action. She furthered that the District Senior Superintendent of police (SSP) had also directed the police to take appropriate steps but no such proceedings were initiated against the husband and subsequently against the Panchayat. However District SP, Satish Kumar refuted the claim saying that the police has not yet received any such complaints.
Meanwhile, social activist Nida Khan maintained that since the child is very young his custody should remain with the mother.