Woman dies after 'exorcism' in Kodinar

India Express/May 1, 2010

Rajkot - A 36-year-old woman died in Kodinar on Thursday allegedly after she was not given food for 22 days and made to sleep on sand under sun. According to the father of the deceased, she was harassed physically and mentally by her husband, in-laws and a dargah priest on the pretext of freeing her from 'spirit possession'.

While the Surendranagar police have registered a case of accidental death, Sikander Chauhan, father of deceased Farida Parmar, has submitted an application to the police, holding her husband Amin, father-in-law Murad and mother-in-law Mariam responsible for her death.

Chauhan, a resident of Surendrnagar, said Farida was chained for over three weeks at Rizgula dargah by its priest Faruqbapu. "She was forced to sleep on hot sand under scorching sun and wasn't given food, after which she died," he stated in the application.

He further said that when he visited the dargah five days ago, Faruqbapu did not allow him to meet her saying the "treatment is on".

The Surendranagar police said the body has been sent for post-mortem to Rajkot. As the incident happened in Kodinar, the case has been transferred to the police station there, they added.

The police said Farida was married to Amin for 20 years and was mother of three. She recently underwent hysterectomy (an operation to get uterus removed). Amin told the police as she was not keeping well after the surgery, they consulted Faruqbapu, who said she was "possessed."

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