An unemployed man allegedly battered his 76-year-old-mother with a brick, strangled her using a mouldable plastic pipe and then sat beside her body for hours, crying over a crime he “repented” later, police said on Friday.
And all this because she refused her son’s demands to leave the house and live at an old-age home as he could not “afford” to provide for her.
The man, identified as Laxman Kumar, 48, then called the police and surrendered after the incident in Sagarpur in southwest Delhi on April 25.
The incident underpinned a 2016 study by an NGO which said a majority of older people in India face abuse that include denial of food, medicines, emotional blackmailing, threatening, shouting, and beating. India has more than 100 million people above the age of 60 years who are categorised as elderly.
A senior Delhi Police official said Laxman told his interrogators that he was undergoing treatment for depression. Police are yet to verify the claim, which, if proven, could lead to a lesser sentence.
“He did not wish to keep his mother with him because he was not financially sound. He said he could not afford her,” the officer said.
“In his statement, he said he asked her to leave the house several times, but she refused saying she had nowhere to go. He said he told her to either go to an old-age home or an ashram or to her other son who lives in Faridabad but she refused to leave the house, which angered him.”
Laxman, who was unemployed, stayed with his mother after his wife left him two years ago.
Police quoted neighbours as saying that the accused often fought with his mother and that they could hear her cries.
On Tuesday, however, the fight took an ugly turn and Laxman allegedly attacked her with a brick. “He said that was the only option he thought was left to get rid of her,” the officer added.
Laxman told police he realised his mistake and repented. It is then he called the police and informed them.
“He called us and said ‘maine amma ko maar diya’.”