January 16, 2006

Dead man walking

The villagers said, “oh Raju dear,
To us you are quite dead, we fear
Show us some proof
Then we’ll call it a spoof
But until then of this village steer clear!"

TOI 15/01/06: He is alive but his family and villagers think he is a walking ghost. Raju Raghuvanshi finds himself in a peculiar situation. He has been ostracised by his village because his last rites and shradh bhoj (community feast to ensure peace for his soul) had been performed. Realising that his ordeal will not end, the middle-aged Raghuvanshi of Katra village in MP’s Mandla district filed a complaint with the police. In the complaint Raghuvanshi said, "villagers consider me a ghost and my family does not want to accept me." While the police recorded his complaint, they asked him to approach the court. In fact, the village panchayat has also asked him to produce evidence to prove he is not dead.

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