On Tuesday (July 20), the Aurangabad police booked a man and his family members for demanding a 21-nailed tortoise in dowry from his fiance.
As per reports, the accused has been identified as one Army jawan from Nashik. With the help of common contact, he was engaged to a woman from Aurangabad on February 10 this year. Before the engagement, he solicited 10 grams of gold and ₹2 lacs in cash from her family as a token of dowry. He also took ₹10 lacs with the false assurance of getting his fiance a permanent government job. The accused failed to keep his promise and began escalating his demands with each passing day, the girl’s family have stated in the FIR.
He had also asked his future in-laws to arrange for a tortoise with 21 nails, a black Labrador, a Buddha statue, and a Samai oil lamp. The woman and her family began searching for the rare tortoise but failed to find one. It is believed that the cost of one such tortoise ranges between ₹5 lacs and ₹ 10 lacs. The woman’s father informed the accused that he couldn’t arrange for the animal. This led to a disagreement between the two families, with the accused threatening to call off the marriage. Meanwhile, the woman had asked her parents to not give in to his demands.
As per the TOI report, wildlife activists have stated that there is some superstitious belief that the 21-nailed tortoises bring ‘good fortune’ and guide the owner to ‘hidden treasure’. Hence there is a demand for the rare animals in some areas.
Woman’s family files complaint, accused booked for cheating and criminal breach of trust
The woman’s family asked the man to return all the valuables that were paid to him as a token of dowry. They also lodged a complaint against him and his 5 family members at the Osmanpura police station. While speaking about the matter, Inspector Dilip Tare said, “Based on the complaint lodged by would-be bride’s father, the jawan and five of his family members have been booked on the charges of criminal breach of trust and cheating.”
He added, “Following the engagement ceremony, would-be groom and his parents, citing auspiciousness, asked the bride’s family to get a 21-nailed tortoise, a black canine, and traditional lamp as part of the dowry.” The accused has been charged under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) Sections 34 (criminal act in furtherance of common intention), 406 (criminal breach of trust), and 420 (cheating). Reportedly, the accused army is posted in Assam while his family members live in the Buldhana district of Maharashtra.