In an incident that will probably haunt him for the rest of his life, a 10-year-old saw his mother being set ablaze by his father, following an argument over dowry. Irfan Sheikh (34), his parents and his two sisters had allegedly been torturing 27-year-old Meena for dowry ever since the couple got married in 2003.
The birth of two kids, 4-year-old Anwar and 10-year-old Imran, and the fact that eleven years had elapsed since the couple’s marriage did not stop the daily beatings and torture. On June 14, there was a heated argument between Meena and Irfan in which her in-laws were also involved.
After they beat Meena up, Irfan flew into a rage, doused Meena’s body in kerosene and set her ablaze as 10-year-old Imran watched. In a bid to save herself, Meena tried to cling to Irfan, due to which he suffered minor burns.
Meena had suffered 90% burns by the time she was rushed to Sion Hospital, and she succumbed to them on Tuesday. “We have registered a case of murder and dowry harassment against Irfan, his parents and his sisters. He will be arrested once he is discharged from Sion Hospital, where he is being treated for his burns. The couple’s 10-year-old son Imran is the prime eyewitness in the case. We are recording his statement.”
‘He burnt mom’
Speaking to mid-day, Meena’s brother Halim Khan said, “It was getting more difficult for Meena as each day passed. Even having two kids did not save the marriage or prevent Meena from being beaten up every day.”
“Imran left the house immediately. He came to my mother and said, ‘Nani, papa ne ammi ko jala diya’. We rushed to her house and I found my sister Meena completely naked with burns covering her body. We rushed her to Sion hospital, but she had received 90% burns. She died on Tuesday evening.”