A New York-based Sikh woman from India died by suicide after allegedly being abused and tortured physically by her husband for eight years. The woman and her husband have two daughters whose ages are four and six years and are currently in the custody of their father.
Mandeep Kaur ended her life on August 3, 2022. The 30-year-old had previously alleged that her husband Ranjodhbeer Singh Sandhu used to beat her and when she tried to leave him, he allegedly threatened to kill her family who lived in India. Her in-laws live in Bijnor, Uttar Pradesh and reportedly, even after knowing their son's wrong-doings, they never protested or intervened. After the death of their mother, the two daughters are with their father in Richmond Hill, New York where the family lives.
Social media demands justice for Mandeep Kaur
An Instagram page by the name @TheKaurMovement has shared a video of Mandeep Kaur in which she can be seen describing the abuse she suffered through the years at the hands of her husband. She also accused her husband of having extramarital affairs. She even described an incident when he kept her hostage in a truck for days and used to beat her. After that, her father filed a police case against Kaur's husband because of which he begged her to save him which she did. However, he continued to abuse and torture her even after the case was withdrawn.
In the video, she can be seen constantly crying and showing her scars and wounds. Kaur said that she tried to live her life and tolerate everything for her daughters but she could not take it anymore and has to leave her kids and go. She talked about how her in-laws didn't help her at all and that God will punish all those who caused misery to her. The abuse allegedly started when they lived in India for two and a half years and continued when they moved to New York. The New York police department has registered the case and is reportedly investigating it as a homicide and not suicide.
In another video, the husband can be seen pushing the deceased on the bed and strangling her after she refuses to tolerate anymore abuse. The children can be heard screaming and crying in the background, asking their father to not beat their mother.
The hashtag JusticeForMandeep is now doing rounds on social media as people demand strict action against Kaur's husband and his family, also calling to create awareness about domestic abuse. "I know there is a silent section of the male punjabi community thinking "this isn't just a punjabi problem". Hands on heart - is there any punjabi that isn't related to/knows of a woman that has suffered/is suffering due to a man? Theres your answer," tweeted one user.
Another user pointed out at the need to educate sons, "A reflection of sexism, patriarchy and just “old fashion thinking” so engrained in the South Asian community. Educate your sons, learn to be humble, kind humans. #JusticeforMandeep."
One user expressed shame for being part of a society that normalises patriarchy and domestic abuse in the name of culture and tradition. "The cries of the 4 & 6 yr old asking their father to not hit their mother will stay in my head for a long time. I’m ashamed to be a part of this society which normalizes patriarchy & domestic abuse in the name of culture & tradition. We all are responsible."
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