Hands of migrant labourers chopped off by contractor in Odisha
The right hands of two migrant labourers were chopped off by a labour contractor and his accomplices in Odisha.
Police have begun a manhunt for the accused, who are allegedly involved in labour trafficking.
On Sunday night, the victims identified as Jialu Nial (30) and Nilambar Dhangdamajhi (28) reached the government hospital at Bhawanipatana, the district headquarters of Kalahandi, about 500km from state capital Bhubaneswar.
Police said the accused contractor had paid an advance of Rs 14,000 each to 12 labourers, including five women, from different villages in Kalahandi district a fortnight ago to work in a brick kiln in Andhra Pradesh.
However, the contractor instead forcibly tried to take them to Raipur in Chhatisgarh to engage them in another brick kiln. The labourers resisted and all of them, except Niali and Dhangdamajhi, managed to escape when the group had halted at Sinapali in neighbouring Nuapada district on December 9.
The contractor and his accomplices had allegedly held the duo captive at an undisclosed village in Nuapada and tortured them.
On Sunday evening, they decided to bring the two labourers back to Kalahandi, where they were going to recover the advance amount from all labourers.
But on their way back, they stopped the vehicle in Balangir district to consume liquor. The accused then chopped off the right hands of the two labourers and dumped them on the road.
“We were in excruciating pain and bleeding profusely. We tried to reach the nearest village. Some people spotted us and helped us board a bus to Bhawanipatna,” said Nial, lying on a bed in hospital.
Dhagdamajhi’s father Madhab Dhangdamajhi said was informed of his son’s captivity from the labourers who had managed to escape and lodged a complaint with the local police on December 13.
“We have identified the accused and raided their houses, but they are absconding. We are also searching for some labourers who had escaped but are yet to return home,” said Kalahandi superintendent of police Sarthak Sarangi.