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Home / India News / Jharkhand woman, 55, branded witch, hair chopped off; 9 arrested

Jharkhand woman, 55, branded witch, hair chopped off; 9 arrested

Rameshwar Bhagat, the officer in-charge of Kolebira police station, said the woman, fearing villagers, did not approach the police. Upon receiving information, the police visited the village on Monday and asked the victim to file a written complaint in police station.

india Updated: Sep 22, 2020, 21:04 IST
Sanjoy Dey
Sanjoy Dey
Hindustan Times, Ranchi
The incident took place on Saturday at Kombakera Ganjhutoli village in Kolebira block where villagers held a meeting, led by a village priest, and branded a 55-year-old woman a witch. (HT Photo)
The incident took place on Saturday at Kombakera Ganjhutoli village in Kolebira block where villagers held a meeting, led by a village priest, and branded a 55-year-old woman a witch. (HT Photo)

Amid protest by the villagers, police on Tuesday arrested nine persons, including six women, who allegedly chopped off a woman’s hair and forced her to parade in the village after branding her a witch in Simdega district’s Kolebira block, around 110-km from capital Ranchi, police said.

Simdega superintendent of police (SP), Dr Shams Tabrez, while briefing media persons, said, “The victim lodged a complaint on Monday evening. On the basis of her complaint, we set up a special investigation team (SIT). The team arrested all the nine accused in the case on Tuesday.”

The incident took place on Saturday at Kombakera Ganjhutoli village in Kolebira block where villagers held a meeting, led by a village priest, and branded a 55-year-old woman a witch.

They alleged that a village boy died a month back due to black magic performed by the woman. The villagers decided to punish her. They publicly chopped off her hair and forced her to parade in the village, police said.

Rameshwar Bhagat, the officer in-charge of Kolebira police station, said the woman, fearing villagers, did not approach the police. Upon receiving information, the police visited the village on Monday and asked the victim to file a written complaint in police station.

“The woman filed a complaint on Monday evening. On the basis of her complaint, FIR was lodged against nine named persons and 40 unknown,” he said. The accused were booked under various sections of the IPC and under sections 3 and 4 of the Prevention of Witch (DAAIN) Practices Act.

Simdega sub-divisional police officer (SDPO) Raj Kishore said, “They left for the village on Tuesday morning. A section of the villagers were protesting police action but we arrested all the nine accused in the case.”

All the accused underwent Covid test at Kolebira.

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