Man kills wife for ‘talking back’, accused remanded into police custody

The incident took place at Saiton Leitanpokpi Ward No IV in Bishnupur district on Wednesday

In a shocking incident, a 75-year-old man allegedly killed his wife with a sword for talking back to him in Bishnupur district in Manipur, sources said.

The incident took place at Saiton Leitanpokpi Ward No IV in Bishnupur district on Wednesday. The accused named Soibam Mani had reportedly informed about the incident to his elder son through his grandson. The couple has six children; all are married, except the youngest son.

Mani allegedly killed his wife, Soibam Ongbi Pishakmacha Devi, 65, at an open area surrounded by bushes on the southern side of the courtyard near the house, by slitting her neck with a sword. The accused had cut the bushes at the spot three days ago before the incident occurred.

When this Imphal Free Pressreporter and team of Women Action for Development (WAD) visited the area and interacted with the family members, they were told that the accused is addicted to alcohol and ganja.

The family members said the 75-year-old accused usually carries a cool and calm demeanor and they are absolutely shocked to learn that he had allegedly killed his wife. 

They said that at around 5 pm, Mani called his wife from the riverside where he had gone to catch fishes. No one except the children was there at home when the incident took place. The family members and the locality came to know about the crime when one of Mani’s grandsons began to cry and called his father.

Family members said the accused himself confessed to his family and police that he killed his wife with sword for talking back to him. They have no knowledge of what had happen between them in evening because they were not at home earlier. The accused even hid the sword (after washing it with water) which he used in allegedly killing his wife, they said. They further informed that Mani’s wife was suffering from gout and cannot walk fast.

It was learnt that the family members are poor daily earners. The locals raised suspicions that the accused might have a pre-plan to kill his wife as he had cleaned up the bushes at the area three days ago, before calling his wife to come out at the area in the evening time, the locals said.

They also said that the accused has no history of violence but known to be addicted to ganja and alcohol. However, the locals have never heard of any fights occurring in Mani’s household. Though the family is poor and work as daily wage earners; they live happily, the locals said.

It may be mentioned that Mani’s daughter in law had also committed suicide some months ago.

This is a second such incident in the state where a man allegedly killed his wife in a rural area. Mass awareness and counseling programmes are highly required in rural areas, said secretary of WAD Sobita Mangsatabam.

She drew attention of the state government to take serious concern on the issues of crime against women in rural areas of the state. There has been an increasing number of crimes against women in rural areas compared to urban area, she asserted. 

She appealed to the authorities to open a mobile forensic lab in every district so that mobile teams of forensic science laboratories could reach a location in short duration.

She also expressed hope for speedy investigation and judgment the court concerned.

On Thursday, Moirang police produced the accused before the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Bishnupur and he was remanded into five days police custody till June 1. Police submitted a prayer which mentioned that the eldest son of the accused lodged a complaint to police on Wednesday about the incident.

The Police sent a letter to Forensic Science department of Pangei for investigation of the crime scene and accordingly forensic science laboratory, Pangei recorded the scene. On preliminary interrogation, the accused has admitted the charges leveled against him under section 302IPC

First Published:May 29, 2020, 8:12 a.m.

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