Eight members of a man's poverty-ridden family were shot and beheaded before their bodies were thrown into a river in eastern India after he secretly married a wealthy girl, police said on Wednesday.
Police in the eastern state of Bihar found the eight bodies floating in a river and have charged 15 people, mostly from the girl's family, with the murders.
The weekend killing took place after 21-year-old Ratan Mandal eloped with 18-year-old Kanchan Kumari and got married secretly, afraid their families would never approve due to an old social rivalry.
"The girl's family invited the boy's family for a meeting on the pretext of settling the dispute, but killed all eight and beheaded them," said Raghunath Prasad Singh, a senior police officer from Bhagalpur, where the incident took place.
Bhagalpur, one of India's most lawless regions, has been notorious for revenge and honour killings.
Men and women are still murdered across the villages of eastern and northern India for daring to marry outside their caste.
In May last year, a young couple was murdered by the girl's family in northern India for marrying within the same village, considered taboo in many communities.
(Writing by Bappa Majumdar; Editing by Alistair Scrutton and Jerry Norton)