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Asia 21-year-old Nepalese woman dies during menstrual exile

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A WOMAN has died in a remote village in Nepal after being exiled from her home during her period, government official Tul Bahadur Kawcha said today.

The 21-year-old is believed to have died from smoke inhalation from a fire she lit in a hut to keep warm in the freezing temperatures in the mountain village.

She was found dead on Monday.

Despite a decade-old ban on menstrual exile, women in some Nepalese villages are still forced out of their homes and made to live in poorly insulated and unheated huts or cow sheds during their periods.

Families who observe the Hindu practice believe that menstruating women anger the gods if they remain indoors and contaminate their homes.

A new law, which goes into effect in August, will punish people who force the practice on women with up to three months in prison or a 3,000 rupee fine (£34), about two weeks pay on the minimum wage.

The existing ban does not carry any kind of penalty.

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