The death of 22-year-old Vismaya V Nair has left Kerala shell-shocked and as the state debates dowry harassment and domestic violence, parents of Vismaya and her husband Kiran Kumar, are appearing regularly on television channels. Kiran Kumar was arrested on June 22 following allegations that he had harassed Vismaya for dowry and it emerged that she had sent pictures of her injuries to a cousin a few days before her death. His parents, meanwhile, have shifted the blame of Vismaya’s death on her family and have given varying versions to different media houses.
In an interview to Manorama News, Kiran’s father Sadasivan Pillai said, “When I got up around 2.30 am (on June 21) to use the toilet, I heard a sound from their room. My wife also woke up around the same time to use the toilet. Around 15-20 minutes later, we again heard some noise in their room, which is on the first floor. When we went to enquire, Vismaya said she wanted to go home. Kiran had withheld her phone... I think. We assured her and said we could discuss that in the morning. We even said she could sleep in the other room on the ground floor. They sat together and discussed for some time, and resolved the issue for the time being. We then went back to sleep.”
Chandramathi, Kiran's mother, said, “However, later, we heard Kiran crying out for us. He said Vismaya was lying in the bathroom. He started gasping for breath. We called a friend (Pradeep) and took her to the hospital."
In an interview with Kerala Kaumudy, Kiran’s mother said that they loved Vismaya more than their own daughter. She said that Vismaya had wanted to go home the night before she died. "It was hearing voices from their room that we went there. Then she said she wanted to go home. Kiran's dad then said that it was late in the night and the house was not nearby," the mother said.
In this interview, the mother does not mention that Vismaya made this request at 2.30 am. She also does not say that Kiran had confiscated Vismaya’s phone. Instead, she shifts the blame to Vismaya’s parents. "Her family could also come here, but they hardly ever visited. Even for (Kiran and Vismaya's) wedding anniversary, they did not even call or message. Kiran and Vismaya bought a cake and cut it together. They were always so happy together," claimed the mother.
In the wee hours of June 21, Sivadasan and Chandramathi heard screams and cries from Kiran and Vismaya's room, the mother told Kerala Kaumudy. When they rushed, they found Vismaya hanging and Kiran trying to save her and give her first aid, his dad claimed. They called a relative to bring a car to take her to the hospital immediately, he added.
In an interview to Marunadan Malayali portal, Chandramathi goes a step ahead and claimed that Vismaya’s parents may have planned to trap Kiran and it is as part of this plan that Vismaya would insist on going to her house. A few months ago, when the couple went to Vismaya’s house in the night, Kiran had slapped Vismaya in front of her family. Angered by his actions, Vismaya’s father approached the police then, but no case was registered after Kiran’s colleagues and the police asked for a compromise.
“I feel her father was trying to trap my son by making Vismaya insist that she wants to go home,” she told Marunadan.
In the same interview, she said Vismaya gets this ‘disease’ in the night, insisting to go to her house. Throughout these interviews, the parents do admit that Kiran was unhappy with the Toyota Yaris car that was gifted to him during the wedding and there have been fights over it. However, according to Kiran’s parents, it was "a youngster’s mistake" and Vismaya’s parents should have tried to solve the issue.