Roop Kanwar – Sati Mata

September 1987, 17 year old Roop Kanwar performed self immolation on her husband’s pyre (sati).

As word spread devotees started visting and worshipping at the site. The government arrested 45 people, releasing all of them last year. Thousands of villagers gathered in the village in memory of the sati mata with efforts made to turn the site into a temple.

In spite of the government ban, she has acquired the status of the village’s favoured diety, though it is widely believed that she was drugged or forced to kill herself.

The India of the 21st century still exists uneasily side by side with the India of olden times