2017.08.05 (VT): In Kosi Kalan on Friday Morning, a woman fell into a large open sewer while defecating in public and died.
Reports say the woman had an epileptic seizure, which caused the woman to lose her balance and fall into the sewage where she drowned.
The majority of villagers in Braj do not have a bathroom at home. While some cannot afford one, others choose not to have one, following ancient beliefs that say defecating in the house is “dirty.” Indeed, in rural areas where there is no sewage system in place, home bathrooms can give off a foul smell, reinforcing the belief that defecation should be done outside the home.
Villagers often go to the fields in the wee hours of the morning to defecate, but sometimes people, including children, squat on the edge of open sewers so that fecal matter falls directly in the collected sewage. That is likely what this woman was doing when she fell to her death.
The deceased woman and her husband, who were from a small village in Madhya Pradesh, had come to Braj to survive by begging.