Khap Panchayat and their Menace

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It is a matter of grave concern that youngsters of our country have been suffering from the diseases like cancer called “Honor Killing” for a long time. Falling in love with a girl of a different caste or of the same clan is the symptom of this disease. Most of the cases (more than 90%) happen only in areas of, Haryana and West UP. NCRB (National Crime Records Bureau) says that more than 1000 young people in India have been done to death every year owing to ‘Honor Killings’ linked to forced marriages.

According to statistics from the United Nations, one in five cases of honor killing internationally every year comes from India. It is said in those community that marriage can be forced to save honour, and girls can be murdered for rejecting a forced marriage and marrying a partner of their own choice who is not acceptable for the family of the girl.

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Thing is that they killed the couples brutally. I can’t explain. I have heard many cases of couples in which one of them I know. My friend was narrating the whole unbelievable story. You will be astonished if I say that the people who kill the couples belong to a well-educated family. Even police and system helps in converting honor killing to open and shut case by declaring suicide or other excuses because they were afraid of being ostracized.

I don’t know for which honor those people are talking about. Like the Taliban in Pakistan and Afghanistan, the khaps have attained notoriety by issuing diktats on dress code for women and demanding a ban on the use of cell phones by young girls and women.

The main ethos of such system

Khap people try to explain the Khap as the oldest system of village panchayat. Time has changed. At that time, there was no concept of Panchayati Raj System. Now we have legal authority to run villages through Panchayati system. We should believe in it. But Khap people will not be agree on it. It is so because the main ethos of such system is to establish the oldest male and upper caste dominated society which is not acceptable in modern administrations. I am saying so due to their structure of the system.

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There is no space for women in such panchayat. Women’s issues are deprived of being addressed. Only old age people could be a member of such panchayats. In fact, there is no space for youth in such Panchayati system. Youth is said that your uncle, ‘Tau’ and grandfather is there then why are you talking about. Actually, Khap wants to gather their ancient power which is mirage for the modern period.

Their system is existing in the area of west U.P. and Haryana because of political patronization. Just for the sake of votes some political parties patronize them but when matter starts becoming serious they back out. In fact, there is no space for lower caste people.  Even if some Dalits are present in those Panchayat but they don’t have courage to address their issues with full respect and freedom.

What they do that they organize meetings for any issue in which people of the belonging place participate into it. In that panchayat, only old age male people sit on ‘Khat’ as a Leader to impose their decision on whole village for all communities. How such decision can be based on collective consensus? But they say that their each and every decision is based on collective consensus which seems contradictory to hear so.

Cause of their evolution

After independence, inter-state people movement increased. Consequently, form of population changed. Before independence there was 5-6 clans in a village which turned into more than 15 clans in the same village. Small villages turned to large villages. After that it becomes difficult to abide their imposed laws. As statistic shows that sex ratio in those areas is comparatively lowest among the states in India.

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Their main cause of evolution is the complete administrative failure. where the nearby people along with administrators have been involving in it. It is believed that they also live in some villages of the same family and they are afraid of being ostracized. This is the basic reason of their moral and legal support behind the curtain become prominent.

It has been pattern to make the girl to confront the burden of culture. Since boys are out of the hand, so it has been become necessary to dominate over women so that they could hold the power. We people ask to Muslim personal law board to stop exercising the parallel constitution. We must also ask to Khap panchayats to stop exercising the parallel Judiciary.

Issues like Triple Talaq in the Muslim community, Khap is also deteriorating the women status in the society. They don’t have rights to sentence so. If laws and constitution is allowing couples to marry to anyone then, they should have no authority to get into it on the name of tradition and so called prestigious castes. These are the very dangerous things where government should seriously look into it. 

Nothing less than the Taliban

Some case study shows that their action is nothing less similar to Talibani Farman. Two sisters, aged 23 and 15, and belonging to the Dalit caste grouping, fearing for their lives after their brother, Ravi, reportedly eloped with a woman from the higher Jat caste in Baghpat village in Uttar Pradesh state. Dalits are traditionally regarded as “untouchables” in India, and the lowest-rung in the country’s oppressive and resilient caste system.

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The elder sister, Meenakshi Kumari, then approached the Supreme Court, alleging that a Khap panchayat had ordered that the Jat woman’s ‘honour’ should be avenged by raping the two Dalit sisters and parading them naked in the village, their faces blackened. Nothing could justify this abhorrent punishment.

A landmark judgment is sentenced by the Additional Sessions Court at Karnal in the Manoj-Babli “honour” killing case, in which five accused were given the death sentence, sent shock waves among caste panchayat leaders. As it reminded them that they were not above the Constitution. The court took serious note of the fact that the policemen deployed for the security of Manoj and Babli actually facilitated the accused in perpetrating the crime.

Honor Killings of couples have been found on a large scale. The Khap verdicts of honor killings came into the limelight in 1991 with the Mehrana Killings when a Jat girl and Jat boy were executed on the order of a Khap. After that Manoj and Babli case got create huge drama on prime time. Forced Marriages Forced marriages are done by pressurizing one of the partners who might be an adult or minor.

The victim of such marriage undergoes fear, threat, abduction, and torture, sometimes resulting in suicide also. Whimsical ways of delivering justice They impose their decision on girls for their wearing dress code. They believe that eating Chinese food like ‘Chawmin’ is the cause of rape in India.

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