Sunday, December 29, 2013


Pari's laughter rang through the beauty parlor as she got ready for her wedding. She was excited, scared, happy, and sad, all at the same time. The dreams of her new future were coupled with an increasingly stronger realization about how it would change her reality.

"Ma'am, someone is here to see you." Pari was informed by an attendant.

"Who is it?" she turned around, curious.

What happened next was something nobody in their wildest dreams had imagined. A seemingly well-to-do guy entered the scene, smiled at Pari, and doused her with an immeasurable amount of toxic acid; all in a quick succession.

The parlor now rang with her shrieks and screams of others around her. Nobody dared to catch the culprit; perhaps, they were frozen with shock. She cried, and writhed in pain as the ambulance and police were called.

* * * * *

A newsflash revealed that the cops had found a letter left behind by the accused. According to the letter, Pari had been in a relation with the him, and had broken up with him to marry someone else. Heartbroken and infuriated, he had decided this deed would be the best revenge.

This revelation set tongues wagging.

"Children these days have no values, no culture. Making boyfriends and girlfriends and indulging in whatnot. Tsk-tsk. What is our dear country coming to!"

"If my daughter had done this, I would have poured acid on her myself. And, then on that guy, too."

"She has brought shame to her family, and deserves this."

"Her family members can't show their faces to anyone; now she can't, either. Justice has been served."

Another news update a mere day later brought something else to light.

The accused was not Pari's former boyfriend; rather, he was the accomplice of the ex-wife of the elder brother of Pari's husband-to-be. She had already made two attempts before to harm her ex-husband's family, but they had been foiled. By what logic she had targeted Pari was unfathomable.

Pari was shifted from the local hospital to a super-speciality hospital in a metro city. She was in extreme pain. Although she was stable, she was also critical. She had expressed her wish to talk to her fiance. He had, however, along with his family, shirked off all responsibility, and severed all ties with the her and her family.

She, now, was not only gravely physically hurt, but also emotionally wounded. She could not decide which suffereing was greater. She lost consciousness several days later, finally succumbing to the injuries after twenty days of the ordeal.

"We were ready for her bidaayi, but not of this sort. We had been preparing for her wedding, and now we are preparing for her funeral."

In loving memory of Harpreet, the acid-attack victim from Ludhiana, who passed away on 27 December, 2013. Rest in peace.