BARIPADA: Three persons have been arrested by police on Wednesday in connection with the double murder in Kathachua hamlet of Ambadhai village under Sarat police limits of the district.
An elderly couple was allegedly killed on the suspicion of practising sorcery in tribal dominated Mayurbhanj district. Police had registered a case on Tuesday and initiated a probe into the ghastly double murder.
On Monday night, a group of villagers allegedly hacked Hadi Purti (60) and his wife Mandei Purti (53) to death when they were asleep. Son of the deceased, Bijay Purti alleged three persons slit the throats of his parents who were sleeping on the verandah of their thatched house and stabbed them to death before fleeing.
“I was inside the house along with my wife and children while my parents were asleep on the verandah. Listening to their screams I came out and saw my parents were lying in a pool of blood and the miscreants running away,” he wrote in the complaint lodged with the police.
Police said Hadi had at least 20 stab injuries on his body while Mandei’s throat was slit and her left hand chopped off.
OIC of Sarat police station Nabakishore Dash said he rushed to the spot information from a Gram Rakhi.
Preliminary investigation revealed that a group of residents had organised a village committee meeting and discussed about some recent deaths in the village.
They held the old couple responsible and blamed them of practising sorcery. Suspecting that black magic practised by the couple was the reason behind illness of some villagers, they decided to eliminate them.
Mayurbhanj tops the chart of sorcery killings in the State with at least 61 deaths between 2005 and 2014.
The deaths come close on the heels of three murders over witchcraft in Rayagada district.