A 19-year-old woman from Salem of Tamil Nadu was forced to undergo an abortion by her parents, since she had married a Dalit man. Renuka Devi from Thiruvachoor village is presently lodged in a women's rescue home, after undergoing forceful abortion at 4 months of pregnancy. Her parents had also placed restrictions and disallowed her from meeting her husband.
Renuka and Perumal, who hails from Ramanathapuram, got married in August 2020 at Tirupur. Her parents were against the marriage as he was from a different caste. While Renuka belongs to the Vanniyar (OBC) caste, Perumal is from a scheduled caste, according to the police.
After they got married, the couple was living in Perumal's house. On January 21, Renuka received a call from her mother saying that she had fallen sick. The worried daughter decided to go meet her mother, and travelled to her home.
When Renuka went to her house in Thiruvachoor, she was four months pregnant. As soon as she reached, her parents locked her in the house and stopped her from contacting Perumal. Meanwhile, a worried Perumal approached the police with a complaint.
On January 26, Renuka was taken to a clinic in Attur and a forceful abortion was performed. As per media reports, she contacted her husband using her brother's phone on January 28. Perumal then approached the Salem Superintendent of Police and lodged another complaint.
Following this, Renuka was rescued by the police. Her father Subramani and mother Selvi were arrested by the police. Renuka has been moved to a shelter home for the time being. It is unclear if the clinic where the abortion was done was also aware that the young woman was being forced into it.