There was high drama at the fifth additional family court here on Monday when a 32-year-old woman tried to consume kerosene while attending divorce proceedings. Shaila, a resident of Iyyappanagar in K R Puram, resorted to the act as she was reportedly upset that the court imposed a fine of `300 on her for not attending court proceedings.
According to police, Shaila married Dhanaraj 16 years ago. Although, the couple had two daughters, they got separated within two years of marriage. In July, Shaila filed a petition in the family court seeking Rs 5,000 monthly as maintenance and pleading not to be evicted from a house owned by Dhanaraj under provisions of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005.
However, Shaila claimed her husband refused to pay the money and also sold the house she was staying in. “Since I was uneducated, I could not do anything,” she said.
Dhanaraj then filed a divorce petition, claiming Shaila was engaged in immoral activities. He even produced statements, purportedly signed by some woman activists, supporting these allegations, according to advocate Pramila Nesargi, who has taken up Shaila’s case.
After the divorce proceedings began, Shaila received two notices to come to court, which she did not. When she attended proceedings on Monday, the court imposed a fine on her. Shaila immediately became emotional and tried to drink a bottle of kerosene. However, bystanders restrained Shaila, who was handed over to police.
Shaila told police she had accidentally brought the kerosene, mistaking it to be water. She claimed she was totally blind in one eye and vision in the other was also poor. Shaila also filed a complaint of dowry harassment against Dhanaraj.
Wilson Garden police are investigating the case.