Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Jeypore/Boriguma, Apr 19:
Days after four persons from Madhya Pradesh had been lynched for being members of a child abduction gang, five youths who had set out on a mission to trace a missing girl, landed into unforeseen trouble as they were detained for over six hours and were allegedly beaten blue and black on suspicion of involvement in child abduction in a village in Koraput district of Odisha on Saturday afternoon.
The five youths from Jeypore had gone to the Ranaspur area in search of a missing girl. While moving on two bikes, they met a 15-year-old boy, Badu Ganda, and enquired about the girl. The boy replied in affirmative and hopped on to their bike with them towards the outskirts of the village. Badu’s elder brother, Laxman, and one of his friends saw Badu going on a motorcycle with some unknown youths. They smelled something fishy, followed them and waylaid the bikers near Pradhanipur village and brought Badu back with them. Within no time the rumour of suspected child abduction spread like wildfire.
Hundreds of villagers were waiting for the youths to pass through the village so that they could catch hold of them and teach them a lesson. While these youths on two motorcycles were returning, they were netted by these villagers and held them under captivity in an anganwadi centre in the village.
The villagers of Merdhamal in Ranaspur panchayat under Bisingpur police station limits were in no mood to relent and thrashed them on suspicion of child abduction.
They were beaten up merciless despite the youths pleading that they were on the lookout for a missing girl.
Of late, rumours about kidney theft racket, child abductors and eye theft rackets were doing rounds in the village which have left the villagers panicky.
After receiving information, the Boriguma SDPO, along with police personnel, reached the tensed village to pacify the agitated crowd.
Despite several attempts, the villagers maintained that the youths were child abductors.
However, after marathon rounds of talks the situation was brought under control and the youths were freed at around 8 pm yesterday.
“The five youths from Boriguma and Jeypore were looking for a missing girl and were mistaken as child abductors by the villagers. We have rescued them and their vehicles. Investigation has been launched into the incident,” said Boriguma SDPO, Uddhav Nayak.