Wife killed three family members in knife attack: Murder trial told of woman's unhappiness

A MOTHER stabbed three of her relatives to death after entering into an arranged marriage, a court was told yesterday.

Kulwinder Kaur Bahia, 23, allegedly stabbed her mother-in-law 16 times with an eight-inch kitchen knife, her sister-in-law 46 times, and her four-year-old nephew 11 times. She is alleged to have then doused the house in petrol and set it alight.

David Crigman QC, for the prosecution, told Northampton Crown Court that Bahia came to Britain from India at the age of five. In February 1989, when she was 18 years old, she entered an arranged marriage.

She lived with her husband and his mother and other members of the family in Bowden Road, Smethwick, West Midlands, and gave birth to two daughters. Across the road lived one of her husband's sisters, who had a son aged four.

Mr Crigman said family life deteriorated, with Bahia claiming she was ill-treated by both her husband and her mother-in-law who complained about her behaviour and beat her. The family was said to have been very disappointed that her second child was not a boy, and there was talk of a divorce.

Mr Crigman said Bahia became very unhappy and by 5 November 1992 she had formulated a plan to kill. He told the court that on 7 November, she returned home from her job as a machinist, collected the knife and went to the home of her sister-in-law whom she stabbed in a frenzied attack. She then attacked the woman's son, stabbing him repeatedly.

Bahia denies murdering her mother-in-law, Gurmej Kaur Bahia, 60, her sister-in-law Surinder Kaur Dhandwar, 28, and Avtar Singh Dhandwar, 4. She also denies the attempted murder of a four-month- old child.

Mr Crigman said Bahia left the bodies on the kitchen floor and returned to her own home to change her clothes, which would have been covered in blood. She awaited the return of her husband, who had a bath and went to the pub.

The court was told that Bahia attacked her mother-in-law, stabbing her repeatedly in the back, shoulders, chest and neck.

The prosecution says she then put her mother-in-law's body into a large plastic bag and dragged it across the road to her sister-in-law's house. She poured petrol in the kitchen, the lounge and upstairs bedrooms and set it alight.

Mr Crigman said lawyers representing Bahia would contend that she was not guilty of murder but guilty of manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility. It was accepted that she caused the deaths.

Mr Crigman said two days after the discovery of the bodies, Bahia allegedly attacked a four-month-old child by swinging it against a wall, causing a fractured skull.

The trial continues.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?