Shillong, May 9: In the name of tradition, the traditional village council of Warmawsaw fined a couple for living
together,even as the couple who are both divorcees are reported to have been living peacefully. After a section of the press reported about this primitive mode of penalizing by the village kangaroo court, the Sordar (chief) of Warmawsaw Pingstone Pator told newsmen in Shillong on Wednesday that the council is only fulfilling the inherited traditions of penalizing those divorcees who re-settled with their different partners. The new victim is Sabina Makri and Kenneth Syngkli, who reportedly left the village for being monetarily penalized for their voluntary alliance. It was reported that Sabina Makri was asked to pay a fine of Rs 32,000, yet the village chief said, “The fine was only Rs 8000”.
Who on earth gave this traditional body the right to dictate the personal lives of the inhabitants of the village, questioned The Sentinel. The reply came from another functionary of the Village council who said that this is a part of the tradition. Wearing a shirt, pants and a coat and not the traditional dress, these traditional chiefs are virtually indulging in moral policing. Asked on whether they are aware of the law, the Village functionaries seemed to be unaware.
They denied that the two victims were ostracized saying that they left on their own by refusing to pay the Rs 8000
imposed by the council. Asked on whether any separated duos who re-married within the domain are financially penalized, the Sordar simply said, “I have just taken over recently and there is no record with me.”
The issue has reached the State Women Commission and nothing concrete is known about any development on this count.