Two persons were allegedly set on fire in Damoh district in separate incidents on Wednesday and Thursday. While one of the victims succumbed to his injuries while he was being taken to Jabalpur for treatment, the other one was undergoing treatment at the district hospital in Damoh.
In the first incident, Hallu Lodhi, 35, was set on fire by Prem Singh Lodhi, Roop Singh Lodhi, Charan, Mullu, Ballu and two other accomplices.
According to sources, Hallu was stopped by the accused on Wednesday night when he was coming from his farm in village Mausipura and an altercation ensued between the victim and the assailants.
Following this, the assailants sprinkled kerosene Hallu with and put him on fire. Hallu is said to have sustained over 60 per cent burns. His father Ghuman and Raju Singh also sustained burn injuries as they tried to rescue Hallu from fire. Hallu was undergoing treatment at the district hospital. While the incident was described as fallout of old rivalry between two families by the villagers, district SP Siddartha Bahuguna said the fight broke out over boozing. He, however, clarified that statement of the victim has not been recorded yet and once that happened, circumstances of the case would be clearer.
In the second incident, a farm labourer was allegedly set on fire by the farmhouse owner and his friends when he asked for payment of his dues on Thursday afternoon.
According to information, Rakan Soni along with six friends had been to his farmhouse on the outskirts of Pathariya town.
During their stay at the farmhouse, worker at their farmhouse Gappulal, 38, asked for his wages and said if he was not paid Rs 3,000 immediately, he would leave the job. This infuriated Rakan and an altercation ensued between him and his servant. The fight turned ugly when Rakan and his friends put Gappulal on fire.
Gappulal's wife Kamla, who was in a hutment nearby, rushed to rescue her husband but by the time she could do anything, Gappu was severely burnt and he succumbed while being taken to Jabalpur for treatment.
District SP, Siddartha Bahuguna, however, said that preliminary police investigation have revealed that Gappulal had arguments with Rakan on his arrival in the farmhouse and later he came back home and immolated himself.
He said further investigation was being carried out and final outcome was awaited.