In memory of Ashdeep Kaur, age 9

Ashdeep Kaur (Photo Credit:
Ashdeep Kaur (Photo Credit: NBC)

By Guest Contributor: Lakshmi Gandhi (@LakshmiGandhi)

Sometimes a story appears on the local news that’s so sad, tragic, and infuriating that it completely takes your breath away. That’s how I felt when the news broke that a nine-year-old Queens girl named Ashdeep Kaur was strangled on Friday, allegedly at the hands of her stepmother.

NY1 reports Shamdai Arjun, 55 was charged murder by strangulation after the child’s body was found inside a bathtub at her home.

Ashdeep’s short life was apparently filled with turmoil and violence, with many neighbors and family members wondering if she was being abused. Ashdeep was said to even have told a relative that she was afraid to return home with her stepmother.

The response she received is extremely troubling. “That is how we grew up in Punjab. I was thinking, ‘It’s normal, it’s OK. It’s family,’?” said Ashdeep’s uncle Manjinder Singh told the New York Post.

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