A Hindu woman was allegedly burnt alive by her family in Sant Kabir Nagar district in eastern Uttar Pradesh for being in a relationship with a Muslim man. Police arrested the victim’s father, brother and two other relatives, who hired a contract killer for the murder.
Police officials said the family members have confessed to the crime, and a hunt was on for the contract killer who was paid Rs 1.5 lakh to murder the 28-year-old woman, whose burnt body was discovered on February 4. The woman is believed to have been killed the previous night.
Sant Kabir Nagar SP, Kaustubh, said the woman’s father, brother, brother-in-law and a fourth relative, have been arrested. During the course of interrogation, the father, a retired army man, said that his daughter was in a relationship with a married Muslim man, the officer said. His daughter eloped on one occasion but returned and continued with the relationship despite the family’s objections, the father told police.
Police recovered a container in which petrol was stored and a motorcycle that was allegedly used in the killing was also recovered, they added. The half-burnt body of the woman was first discovered at Jigina village under Dhanghata police station limits on February 4. The identity of the woman could not be ascertained at the time, police said, adding that several teams were formed to probe the case.
The body was identified with the help of the local police, surveillance, CCTV footage, a field unit and a dog squad as that of a woman of Jitwarpur village under Belghat police station limit in the neighbouring Gorakhpur district, the SP said. The father of the victim was then arrested.
On the night of February 3, the man allegedly took his daughter to a deserted spot where the killer and others arrived. When the woman raised an alarm, the accused tied her hands and put a cloth over her mouth. Once she fell unconscious, the accused placed jute bags on her, poured petrol and set her on fire, the SP said. The four men -- identified as Kailash Yadav (father), Ajit Yadav (brother), Satya Prakash Yadav (brother-in-law) and Sitaram Yadav (relative) -- fled. The alleged contract killer was identified as Varun Tiwari and is at large, police said.