"Those who threaten our traditional code", says Jai Singh Ahlawat, the Head of the Ahlawat Khap "are the educated youngsters, the Dalit officers, who want everything to be equal... And, of course, our "asabhya betiyan", (immoral daughters) who imagine equality like animals and want our age-old customs to die out..."
Voices like Jai Singh Ahlwat's belong to the patriarchal and casteist pillars of a feudal society -- the Khaps; those who oppose "self-choice" marriages and deny young people the right to love. In 'Izzatnagari ki Asabhya Betiyaan', we have the stories of five young Jat women who dared to resist. There's Seema of Haryana, whose brother Manoj and his wife Babli were killed for marrying in the same gotra. Seema and her mother are fighting for justice in the courts against the killers, though they are pitted against khap panchayats across the region and the political establishment. There's Mukesh of Rohtak, who almost became a victim of an "honour" killing herself; we see how she fought back and and created a new life for herself. Geetika, a student of Delhi University, directs a street play on "honour" crimes. She approaches the play keeping in mind her own need to question the belief systems she was exposed to. Monica, a Jat girl, married Gaurav Saini from Delhi. Gaurav tells us about Monica's struggle to lead an independent life and the subsequent problems their marriage faced since they belonged to different castes. Anjali sees education as a way to break out of the arranged marriage and domestic life her family wants for her. Her M.Phil thesis, on honour crimes, is her answer to the voice of tradition. These multi-narratives of women are intercut with that of the Khaps. Through these stories, Asabhaya Betiyaan exposes the fissures, hypocrisy and violence in a supposedly modern and democratic India.