Chennai: A tea shop owner at Nagapattinam in Tamil Nadu committed suicide after killing his wife and two younger daughters. The incident occurred on Friday morning.
Police said that K Lakshman (55) took the extreme step after his eldest daughter married a Dalit man.
Lakshmanan belonged to Puthucherry village in Kilvelur block of Nagapattinam. He was living in the village along with his wife, Bhuvaneswari (46), and three daughters, Thanalakshmi (21), Vinothini 18, and Akshaya (15).
His eldest daughter, Thanalakshmi married a Dalit youth of the same village Vimalraj against the wishes of Lakshmanan. She was living in another part of the village with her husband much to the discomfort of Lakshmanan.
Police said that Lakshmanan on Thursday late night pounded the heads of his wife Bhuvaneshwari and two younger daughters Vinothini and Akshaya using a grinding stone and later committed suicide.
When people went to his tea shop on Friday morning, it was closed and on inspection at his home which was adjacent to the shop, they found his wife and children lying dead in a pool of blood, and Lakshmanan was seen hanging nearby.
Police reached the spot and sent the bodies for postmortem at Nagapattinam Government General Hospital. The forensic team and sniffer dogs were pressed into service to find out whether any other external intervention had taken place.
The triple murders and Lakshmanan’s suicide led to tension in the area and a heavy contingent of police personnel were deployed to prevent any untoward incident.
Caste-related killings have been rampant in these areas and a girl belonging to the OBC or Upper Caste Hindu family getting married to a Dalit is a major reason for such killings.
Social scientist and Professor at Nagapattinam Government College, M. Jayakumari told IANS, “In several villages of Tamil Nadu, caste is a major factor and people take their lives and kill others for caste. While many efforts to check this have yielded results, still many people keep the caste factor in mind and they won’t compromise if their daughters or sons marry a Dalit. This has to change and other than the government, social and political organizations have to take the initiative to curtail this totally.”