A 28-year-old woman has been arrested and her family members booked after they allegedly stripped and assaulted their 43-year-old domestic worker on suspicion of theft. Police said the family had called a ‘tantrik baba’ (occultist) to find out who among their employees had allegedly committed theft in the house. Based on his ‘verdict’, the accused allegedly beat up the woman who later attempted suicide by consuming rat poison.
Police said the incident took place in South Delhi’s Maidangarhi on August 9 and was reported to them two days later. Police said the family members were booked for assault and criminal intimidation.
According to police, the family claimed they had lost gold jewellery and cash 10 months ago so they called an occultist to find out who committed the theft. Police said he allegedly fed all domestic workers with rice and lime.
The woman alleged in her complaint, “He (occultist) said the mixture will turn red inside the thief’s mouth. They kept (the mixture) in my mouth and it turned red. He called me a thief. After this, my employer and her mother took me to the children’s room and tied my hands and legs with a rope. They forced me into accepting that I was the thief… The next day around 6 am, my employers, their mother and their relative disrobed me. They assaulted me with a rolling pin, shoes and footwear. They also kicked me.”
She was allegedly tied up for hours and assaulted by the family while she was undressed. She told police she admitted the theft so the accused would stop beating her up. “I told them I had hidden all the jewellery in a box at my native place, and my employer sent my husband to fetch the stolen articles. Meanwhile, they returned my clothes… When I went back to my room, I found a bottle of rat poison and ingested it. I was fed up with the torture and found no way out… I thought death would be better than this…,” she said, as per the FIR.
After the woman fell sick, she was taken to a hospital where an MLC was carried out and doctors found that she had injuries on her back and hands. Doctors also stated that she had consumed poison, and police were informed.
DCP (South) Benita Mary Jaiker said: “The woman alleged she was assaulted by her employer and other members of the family because they wanted to extract a confession out of her. She also said she consumed poison because of the torture and humiliation caused by her employers. During investigation, we added sections of disrobing, molestation, wrongful confinement and criminal conspiracy to the FIR. On Monday, we arrested a woman named Seema Khatoon (28) from the same house. Other accused will soon be arrested.”
The woman has been working at the house for two years. Her husband also works there as a security guard.