Bengaluru woman allegedly harassed for dowry, raped and forced to take abortion pill

Diya’s husband and in-laws allegedly assaulted her and forced an abortion pill down her throat because their astrologer had told them that she would have a girl child.
Bengaluru woman allegedly harassed for dowry, raped and forced to take abortion pill
Bengaluru woman allegedly harassed for dowry, raped and forced to take abortion pill
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For 22-year-old Diya*, a resident of Bengaluru’s BTM Layout, the news of her pregnancy seemed like the only good thing life offered her. But she says the happiness was short-lived as her husband and in-laws brutally assaulted her and forced an abortion pill down her throat. The reason – their family astrologer had told her in-laws that she would have a girl child.

Following this violent episode, Diya’s husband Anupam Gupta allegedly tried to set her ablaze inside their home. Fortunately, Diya’s neighbour Sneha* rushed to her help and stopped Anupam.

Diya says she managed to get away and file a complaint against her husband. On January 28, Anupam Gupta was arrested and sent to judicial custody. The scars of the torture she faced still haunt Diya and she is now scared for her life.

In January 2017, Diya, who was a model and aspiring actor, had participated in a concert in Bengaluru, where she met Anupam. Anupam is a techie who works at a private company in Bengaluru and lived with his older brother in BTM Layout.

“I was only 21 years old. Anupam pursued me for a while and our relationship began within weeks of us meeting each other. Anupam was 30 years old then and he pledged his love for me. He also asked me to marry him. We did get married in the presence of his brother at a temple in Bengaluru in March 2017 but Anupam never wanted to register our wedding,” Diya says.

The day after their wedding, Anupam allegedly instructed Diya to stop working. He took away her mobile phone and she was not allowed to step outside their apartment.

“I was deeply hurt by this but I could not contact my parents either. I did not know what to do. I was allowed to call my mother but from Anupam’s phone while he was with me, so I could not speak to her openly about my situation,” Diya says.

However, she alleges that “true torture began in April 2017”, just a day after her birthday.

“I had just turned 22 on April 26, 2017 but no matter how good our relationship was, I was not comfortable in being physically intimate with my husband and I had asked him to wait until I could feel comfortable. On my birthday, Anupam forced me to have sex with him but I refused. We had a huge fight and he left home. He came back in the middle of the night, grabbed my hair and raped me,” Diya says.

Shocked and hurt by her husband’s behaviour, Diya did not venture out of her room for a few days. A few days after the incident, Anupam allegedly tried to rape her once more and when she resisted, he assaulted her.

“I couldn’t open my eye because it was swollen. I was unable to process what was happening. He used to repeatedly rape me. If I resisted, he would beat me up. I was so scared that at one point, I would just lie there and not move until he was done,” Diya adds.

Diya’s mother-in-law, who would visit them regularly, did not help her either. Diya was told to “bear the pain because Anupam was her husband, who had all rights over her body”.

“It was in August 2017 that the demands for dowry began. I had gathered courage and asked my father for Rs 15 lakh. I did not tell him why I needed the money. My father could not afford to dole out so much at such a short notice. That is when the beatings and rape became an everyday thing,” Diya recalls.

One morning in September 2017, Diya began vomiting severely. Anupam then took her to a nearby hospital, where she was given the news of her pregnancy.

“I was so happy and even my husband seemed very happy. When we came back home, we informed my in-laws and they were happy as well. In November that year, my mother-in-law came home one day and said that I could not have the baby. My husband agreed with her. They said that if I do not get money from my parents, they would kill me and my baby,” Diya added.

Diya went to her parents’ home in Chennai, where she stayed till December 25. She had requested her father for money but he was unable to gather such a huge sum.

“My father is in the Army and we are a middle-class family. He does not have that kind of money. When I told my husband that it was not possible to get the money, he told me to come back to Bangalore,” she said.

On December 28, her mother-in-law, brother-in-law and husband allegedly cornered her at home.

“They said that an astrologer had told them that I was going to have a girl child. I couldn’t even move and I fell asleep. My husband had the night shift that day. I woke up when he came back home. He pulled my hair and dragged me out of the room. He kept hitting me on my head and when I screamed, he pushed a pill down my throat. An hour later, I was bleeding a lot and that’s when I realised that he had given me an abortion pill. When I confronted him, he told me it was for my own good,” Diya added.

The torture continued for another month and on January 28, Anupam and his mother allegedly tried to set her ablaze.

“It was around 2 am and I was screaming for help. One of my neighbours came to help me. She pacified my husband and convinced him to send me to her place for an hour’s time. That’s when we rushed to the Madiwala Police Station to file a complaint. The police told me to get treated and then come back,” Diya says.

Despite several attempts to convince the police to register a case, Diya says that the police refused to. She then fled to Chennai to her parents’ home.

“My father wrote a letter to Kiran Bedi, who directed Bengaluru DCP South East Boralingaiah to register a complaint,” Diya says.

Based on the directions of the DCP, the Madiwala police arrested Anupam. He is currently in judicial custody.

The Madiwala police have registered a case under 307 (attempt to murder), 313 (causing miscarriage without woman’s consent), 420 (cheating) and other sections of the Indian Penal Code and relevant sections of the Dowry Prohibition Act against Anupam and Diya’s in-laws. 

*Names changed to protect privacy

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