Case Study

CASE STUDIES

Witch Accused Women Got Justice
            Bara district is a back warded district of Terai region of Nepal. In the rural areas of our country, there are several misconceptions, traditional thoughts and belief, conservative thoughts are deeply rooted.
            A woman named Bhukhali Devi Sahani of Laxmipur Kotwali- 3, Belawatola had been accused as witch (Boksi). She belongs to a very poor family. Her husband Krishana was running a small fruit shop in another district by which their hand to mouth was being maintained.
            Ashiya Devi Kushawaha is a neighbor of Bhukhali Devi. Once there was a dispute between the son of Ashiya Devi and Bhukhali Devi. Next day a snake bite Ashiya devi’s son and again within the same week. For this, Ashiya Devi and her family accused Bhukhali Devi of being witch and with her black magic Ashiya Devi’s son was bite by snake. Ashiya Devi’s family not only accused Bhukhali devi of being witch but also made her eat stool and urine of man forcefully.
            Bhukhali devi had heard about the existence of paralegal committee (PLC) in her VDC for the enhancement of justice for the such mistreat and violation of her rights, so she registered the case of such severe misbehave against the family of Ashiya Devi in PLC. Next day, PLC members met with Bhukhali Devi and Ashiya Devi and discuss about the case. And invite both of them for the dispute solution. In the dispute solution meeting Asiya Devi did not participate. But in that meeting another thunderbolt had fallen to Bhukhali Devi the thunderbolt of a traditional ritual among the ‘Kohiri’- a cast of Terai. According to Kohiri ritual if a person eat or got eaten the stool and urine of man, he or she is degraded from his or her cast or that person is boycott from the previous cast. And if any one wants to get purgatory from that boycott, they have to arrange a fare equal to one lakh. So Krishan Sahani rejected to keep his wife in his home. So that day the dispute was unsolved but PLC decided to rearrange the meeting with the full participation of all concerned public of the village like political parties, government line agencies, non government line agencies, civil society.
            In another meeting arranged by PLC, PLC is successful to convince victimizer- Asiya Devi and make her realize her misdeed. Ashiya devi herself ready to pay 10000 as the penalty to Bhukhali Devi. Not only Ashiya Devi accepted her guilt but Krishana, husband of Bhukhali Devi, realized his traditional thought and ready to keep his wife with him.
            In this way a helpless woman got justice through the support of villagers and PLC.

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