Assam: Wife served ‘doubtful voter’ notice, man commits suicide


GUWAHATI, July 9: A man committed suicide, while his wife struggling with critical injuries in Assam’s Dhubri district, bordering Bangladesh and West Bengal, after a quarrel over husband’s inability to incur the cost for legal battle to get rid of the D (doubtful) voter tag.
A resident of Halakura in the district, Abola Roy (40), who ekes out his living as a labourer, tried to kill his wife Saharibala (35) after they got engaged in heated argument with her on Saturday over his inability to spend money needed to fight the legal battle for removing the D voter tag that was served to his wife five days ago.
“They shouted and quarreled all night. The husband is financially weak and went into depression after his wife got the D voter notice. The husband in his feat of anger tried to kill his wife with sharp weapon. Alerted by the wife’s cry, we rushed to their house and saw she was in a pool of blood. She was injured on her neck, and we rushed her to hospital,” one of the neighbours said. Locals later informed the police.
Dhubri additional superintendent of police, Gunendra Deka told TOI that when police reached Abola’s house on Sunday they found he committed suicide by hanging.
“The wife is undergoing treatment at the Dhubri civil hospital. We will be able to get to know more about the incident once she recovers,” Deka said.
Police said that the couple has three children; the youngest one is about one-and-half year old daughter.
“It is pathetic that D voter notice has shattered another poor family. How long this harassment will continue?,” All Koch Rajbongshi Student Union’s Dhubri unit president Kartik Roy said.
Roy said that the couple, who belong to Koch Rajbongshi ethnic group, said that they were “extremely” poor. “The husband was disturbed thinking over the money he has to shell out to remove the D voter tag from his wife. I learnt that they talked to some lawyer and were told that they may have to spend about Rs 5000 to bear the cost of legal battle. This amount was too much for the poor family”, Roy said.
Last month a marginal farmer Gopal Das (62) of Nichlamari in Assam’s Udalguri district, committed suicide after being unable to bear the financial burden to get free of the D voter tag.
D voter is disfranchisement of persons after their citizenship were found doubtful, and they have to appear before the foreigner’s tribunal with relevant documents to prove that they actually Indian citizens. Till that is done their names are deleted from electoral rolls and cannot exercise their franchise.
An estimated 2,44,144 D-voter cases were referred to the tribunals. But over the years, the number has come down to 1, 25,333 D-voters with over 60,000 of them were found to be Indian citizens. (TNN)