A middle-aged Dalit woman in Gaya district of Bihar was beaten and stripped by her two sons and relatives and was paraded through the streets of Lalganj village on Wednesday.

On Friday, police arrested five people including the two sons and daughters-in-law of the widow who was stripped publicly.

The woman identified as Sonma Devi is a ward member of Lalu Panchayat under Mohanpur police station of the district. She was injured when her sons and their wives assaulted her and cut her hair.  

Soon after the incident Devi called the women's helpline number to place a complaint against her sons and relatives. She told police that her sons, their wives and other relatives beat her because they wanted to take over her property.

In her complaint, Devi named three of her sons - Dilip Paswan, Chhotu Paswan and Sandeep Paswan, and six other relatives - Ramji Paswan, Pintu Paswan, Gautam Paswan, Munni Kumari, Muniya devi and Kamla Devi, for assaulting and abusing her in public, Daily Mail reported.

"Police arrested five accused including two sons and daughters-in-law of the woman and sent them to judicial custody," news agency IANS quoted deputy superintendent of police Rakesh Kumar as saying.

Following the assault, Devi was admitted to Anugrah Narayan Magadh Medical College Hospital in Gaya for treatment.

While Devi said that her sons assaulted her for property, some people in the village claimed that her sons had cast aspersions on their mother's character.

The matter came to light only when Devi called women's helpline number. The social welfare department asked her to lodge complaint against all of them involved in the act.

According to the villagers, the woman earns her livelinhood by preparing meals for schoolchildren under the mid-day meal project.

Pitambar Rai, Mohanpur police station officer in-charge, said that all the people named in the case would soon be charge-sheeted, and the case would be treated as a heinous crime against women, IANS reported.