//Police bid against sati temple

Police bid against sati temple

Bimlendu Chaitanya

Wednesday, April 26, 2006 (Gaya):

Days after 77-year-old Sita Devi committed sati by jumping into the funeral pyre of her husband in the Sidhpur village of Bihar's Gaya district, there is more trouble brewing in the village.

The family and the villagers want to build a temple in the woman's honour which the local police are opposed to as it would only glorify this illegal act.

To thwart the construction of the temple, police forces have been deployed in and around the village.

"We have deployed police forces on the site of cremation. We do not have any knowledge of a sati temple being constructed, but stringent action would be taken if any one participates in the construction," said Amit Jain, SP, Gaya.

People pour in

People from the neighbouring village are pouring in to offer their prayers. The family members and the villagers do not criticise the act.

"I will construct a temple in my mother's name. I don't know what the other villagers will do. If they wish they can build a temple back to back," said Ramashankar Prasad, Sita Devi's son.

"A temple should be constructed so that people can offer their prayers. Her children should build one in her name," said Rita Devi, a local.

As local police try to prevent the construction of the temple there are many questions that need to be investigated, such as why would a 77-year-old woman commit sati by jumping on the pyre?

Also, how could an elderly woman just sneak out of her house and reach the place of cremation a few kilometres away? all such issues have raised many eyebrows.