WORLD : India Bars Ritual on Widow Suicide

<i> From Times wire service</i> s

India’s Supreme Court today refused to allow a Hindu temple to perform a traditional ceremony to glorify “sympathy suicides” by widows.

The All-India Democratic Women’s Assn. argued in a suit that the Hindu Chunry ceremony had long been associated with glorifying suttee, the act of a widow throwing herself on the funeral pyre of her husband. The practice has been outlawed in India for 150 years, but it still happens occasionally in some conservative Hindu communities where suttee is believed to be the ultimate mark of a virtuous wife.