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Odisha woman stripped, thrashed in public for practicing sorcery

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Rairangpur (Mayurbhanj), July 28:

In a shocking incident, an old woman was stripped nude and thrashed mercilessly in the public on suspicion of practicing sorcery at Jodapokhari village of Kusumi block in Odisha’s  Mayurbhanj district on Sunday.

witch huntingAccording to reports, Sushant Hansda, an 18-old boy of Jodapokhari village, was brought to Rairangpur sub divisional hospital in Rairangpur on July 23 for treatment. After the doctors declared him as ‘brought dead’, the kin took the body to their village the same day.

As per the statements of the villagers, while the family members were preparing to cremate Sushant in the evening hours on Saturday, the hands of the body began to shake and his respiratory organs reportedly started functioning.

Suspecting that Sushant was alive, the family members sought the help of the exorcists of the area, who, after examining the body, expressed their inability to keep him alive.

In the meanwhile, three women of the village claimed they would bring the youth back to life. Later, the trio started the treatment through sorcery.

While the treatment was underway, one of the women, Pana Hansda (60), suddenly left the area. Suspecting that the woman was practicing sorcery, the irate villagers later sought her out, stripped her and beat her black and blue after tying her hands around an electric pole.

As the news spread, hundreds of people from nearby villages rushed to the village the next morning.

Following information, the Rairangpur Sadar police rushed to the spot and rescued the old woman and admitted her to the district headquarters hospital at Baripada.

Despite the efforts by senior district officials, including Rairangpur ASP Gobindra Chandra Mallick, SDPO Mohanpani Karua and assistant sub-collector Kirtan Bihari Ojha, who rushed to the village and tried to bring the situation under control, there was no improvement in the situation, the reports said, adding that the body of the deceased was yet to be cremated.

Apprehending untoward incident in the village, armed police forces have been deployed in the village, when reports last came in.

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