It was death sentence after mob trial. Ten alleged thieves were bludgeoned to death by hundreds of frenzied villagers in the Rajapakar Dhelabhora area of Vaishali district on Thursday morning. Another is battling for life at a local hospital.
In a shocking reminder of the infamous Bhagalpur blindings of 1980s, the villagers shouting slogans like na appeal, na daleel, faisla abhi surrounded the thieves and massacred them with sharp weapons, bamboo sticks and iron rods.
The villagers said a gang of 15 burglars was escaping after robbing the house of Sita Singh, an employee of the Bihar State Electricity Board. On alarm raised by the Singh family, hundreds of villagers converged and pounced on the fleeing thieves.
“The mob took just about an hour to kill ten of them. As they ran for their lives to the nearby field, the villagers followed and killed them with crude weapons. The bodies of the victims and their torn clothes were scattered over 200 metres in the village,” said an eyewitness.
The villagers said the gang had been giving them sleepless nights for the last few months. “About a dozen burglaries have been carried out by them. The police was informed but did not life a finger,” said Urmila Devi, mukhiya of Rajapakar panchayat. Ramkant Mahto, a villager, blamed the police for the incident.
Inspector-General of Police (Tirhut range) Krishna Choudhary admitted lapse on the part of the local police in preventing the incident.