31st January 2021
The Good Girls by Sonia Faleiro: Anatomy of two deaths
Sonia Faleiro’s gripping new book, The Good Girls, was triggered by a singularly horrific image which went viral on the internet in 2014. In the sweltering days of May that year, two girls (Faleiro gives them the monikers Padma and Lalli to protect their identities), first cousins, were found hanging from a tree in an orchard in Katra, a village in Budaun, Uttar Pradesh. Their families pointed fingers at the dominant-caste Yadav men in the neighbouring village of Jati. The Shakyas, like the Yadavs, belonged to Other Backward Classes, but they accused the latter of abducting their girls, gang-raping them, and killing them. The state, ruled by powerful Yadav politicians, had given their clan license to act without fear, the Shakyas said.