There is an interesting sequence of entries in a bank passbook I once saw in Purulia District, West Bengal. Shyamoli Sabar, a young woman from the hamlet of Akkarbaid, has an account in the Mallabhum Gramin Bank in nearby Rajnowagarh. She started it on June 17, 1994, depositing Rs 40. Six months later, she made her second deposit: ten rupees. Over the next four years, she deposited such amounts as one rupee, three rupees, ten rupees. Only once did she manage to put in as much as Rs 50.
Until 1998. On May 26th that year, the passbook shows a deposit of Rs 14,943. Then, on November 2nd, Rs 28,231.33. Four days later, Rs 56,042.
How did Shyamoli go from depositing single rupees to tens of thousands?
Simple. The police beat her husband Budhan to death.
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