BARIPADA: In a shocking incident, a 42-year-old man murdered his elder brother and sister-in-law in cold blood on sorcery suspicion at Kukudajhari village within Baripada Sadar police limits on Saturday night.
The accused was identified as Ratha Hembram while the deceased are 52-year-old Puna Hembram and his 50-year-old wife Singha Hembram.
Baripada Sadar IIC SM Minz said Ratha hacked Puna and his wife to death in their sleep. The couple was alone in the house as their only son Kanhei Hembram was living separately after marriage. At around 10 pm on Saturday, Puna and Singha had their dinner and went to bed. Taking advantage of the darkness, Ratha sneaked into their house with an axe and hacked the couple to death while they were asleep, Minz said.
Ratha admitted before the police that he murdered Puna and Singha as he believed that the couple was practising witchcraft on his family. The accused was mentally stressed as three of his family members had died due to various diseases in the last three years. “Ratha revealed that a tribal god appeared in his dream and blamed Puna and his wife for the deaths. The god advised him to kill the couple to ensure his family’s safety,” the IIC informed. Following the dream, Ratha was waiting for a chance to eliminate his brother and sister-in-law.
On Sunday morning, neighbours found Puna and his wife lying in a pool of blood in the house. Grievous injury marks were spotted on the head and neck of the couple. On being informed, police personnel along with a scientific team rushed to the spot and started investigation.
Basing on complaint lodged by the couple’s son Kanhei, the accused was arrested under Section 302 of the IPC and the bodies were sent for postmortem, police said.