Maharashtra: Teased for dark skin, woman poisons food at family function

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"She could not serve the poisoned dal to her husband, mother-in-law and Subhash Mane as they had already eaten food". Five people, including four children, died and 120 others fell sick after consuming the poisoned food.

Police said 23-year-old Pradnya Survase of Khalapur, about 70 km from Mumbai, confessed to mixing a powder used to kill snakes in the dal that was served to some of the guests at a feast hosted by her relative Subhas Mane in Mahad on Monday. Even children weren't spared.

After dinner, many people complained of stomach ache, giddiness and started vomiting incessantly in the early hours of Tuesday.

Several other victims remain in hospital the woman has been charged with murder and is due to appear in court. Presence of insecticide was confirmed after analysing the food samples.

They began investigation and found insecticide near the relative's house. When Survase was questioned, she didn't answer properly which drew suspicion.

She held a grudge since she got married and finally and made a decision to avenge everyone by killing them the Police said.

The police initiated a probe into the incident and arrested the woman on charges of attempt to murder.

"The woman was married two years ago (and) said she was humiliated and victimised by her husband's family who often mocked her over her dark skin tone and lack of cooking skills", Mr Patil said.

But they escaped as they had already eaten that evening, even as the poisoned "dal" was consumed by numerous other victims, five of whom - Gopinath S. Nakure, 53, Kalyani Shingude, 7, Vijay Shinde, 11, Hrishikesh Shinde, 12, and Pragati Shinde, 13 - were killed, he added. She poisoned the food at her relative's housewarming party. She showed up at the event, poisoned the food and helped serve it.

Police said Survase meant to kill her husband, her mother-in-law, two sisters-in-law, along with her mother-in-law's sister and her husband after they "regularly insulted" her complexion and cooking. Raigad superintendent of police Anil Paraskar said, "The accused got an opportunity to kill her in-laws and the Manes when the latter invited all of them for lunch at the function".