It looks like Bihar continues to be ruled by Panchayat rulebook and has little regard for the law. Recently, Mahesh Thakur, a barber was made to spit and lick his saliva and was later beaten up black and blue by women at Azadpur Village in Nalanda district.
Mahesh allegedly entered the village Sarpanch's house without knocking, when there was no male member at home. There are contradicting statements in this regard as the women say he entered fully aware of the fact that there were only women at home, whereas the victim and some others have said that Mahesh entered the house to seek khaini (tobacco) without knowing that the Sarpanch or the Panchayat chief, Dayanand Manjhi was away.
Of course, if the man entered the house with wrong intentions, he should be punished but not according to Panchayat rules. In fact, Mahesh was caught, beaten up by women and was taken to the Panchayat (meeting of the elderly representatives of the village). It was ruled that he should be made to spit and lick his saliva, followed by an assault by women.
However, after someone posted a video of the incident which became viral on social media, the Noorsarai police station has booked a case against eight persons, including Panchayat chief Dayanand Manjhi and Dharmendra Yadav.
However, no one has been arrested so far, even after three days of the incident and the police said that the accused are absconding. The case was booked based on the statement given by the victim.
After the primary probe, Nalanda District Magistrate SM Thyiagrajan told Hindustan Times that "He (victim) perhaps went to the house of sarpanch for tobacco when no male member was present."
Be it a simple matter like theft or inter-caste marriages people are declared guilty by the Panchayats much before the cases are filed in the police station. In fact, cases are not filed often, and action is taken by police rarely.
With no arrests made in this case too, the chances of Mahesh getting justice or a proper probe to prove that Mahesh had wrong intentions (in case) look bleak.