A video grab of 42-year-old Otera Bibi being manhandled by villagers before her death.(HT Photo)
A video grab of 42-year-old Otera Bibi being manhandled by villagers before her death.(HT Photo)

Bengal: Mob lynches mentally ill woman after branding her a child trafficker

Police blamed the incident on miscreants who spread rumours about Bangladeshi child traffickers prowling the region. They have promised to act against them as well as the villagers responsible for the mob lynching.
By Sreyasi Pal | Hindustan Times, Berhampore
UPDATED ON JUN 27, 2017 07:38 PM IST

A mentally challenged woman was lynched on suspicions of child trafficking at Sekendra village in West Bengal’s Murshidabad district on Tuesday. This is the most recent in a string of mob lynchings witnessed across the country over the last few months.

The victim, 42-year-old Otera Bibi, had been undergoing psychiatric treatment for over a year. She was a resident of Mithipur-Pananagar village, located about seven km from Sekendra.

On June 16, HT had reported about rumours of child-traffickers in nearby Jharkhand triggering panic in the state’s West Midnapore, Jhargram and Purulia districts. Sekendra is located about 30 km from the Jharkhand border.

The incident occurred around 3 am on Tuesday, when a villager noticed Otera entering the house of one Dilip Ghosh with something in her hand. Word spread that the woman had come bearing chloroform to abduct Khushi, Ghosh’s minor daughter. A mob rushed into the house and caught her “red-handed”.

“The villagers started beating the woman mercilessly. She was trying to say something, but we couldn’t understand it. In fact, her incoherent speech fuelled suspicions that she was a trafficker from Bangladesh. Some youngsters ripped off the woman’s clothes and partly tonsured her. Then they tied her to a tractor and beat her for three hours,” a local resident told HT on the condition of anonymity.

A small contingent of police personnel reached the spot, but the villagers did not allow them to intervene. By the time reinforcements were called and the woman rescued, it was already too late. Otera succumbed to her injuries soon afterwards.

Additional superintendent of police (Lalbagh-Murshidabad) Angshuman Saha blamed the incident on miscreants who deliberately spread rumours about Bangladeshi child traffickers prowling the region. “We will not spare the people who spread these rumours. We will also take action against the villagers who lynched Otera Bibi if her family lodges a complaint,” he added.

The disappearance of children from the area has given credence to the child-trafficking rumours in Sekendra. Fourteen-year-old Fultushi Ghosh was allegedly abducted from the village on June 21, and police have failed to trace her until now. ”We believe that our daughter has been abducted by Bangladeshi criminals. A complaint was lodged with the Raghunathganj police but to no avail,” said Shankar Ghosh, her father.

Police have dismissed the villagers’ claims that Otera was a child-trafficker.

Incidentally, Sekendra is separated from Bangladesh solely by the Padma river. Locals allege that cattle-smugglers from the neighbouring country occasionally visit the area.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankar addresses a press conference, at Governor House in Kolkata, Friday,(PTI)
West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankar addresses a press conference, at Governor House in Kolkata, Friday,(PTI)

West Bengal Guv, wife donate 5,00,001 for Ram Mandir construction in Ayodhya

PTI, Kolkata
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 04:53 PM IST
A Raj Bhavan statement said a signed cheque was handed over to a team of the VHP and RSS, adding, the donation was made in their personal capacity.
Close
Representational Image. (HT archive)
Representational Image. (HT archive)

Bengal BJP leader, two other workers held for raising ‘goli maro’ slogans in rally

By HT Correspondent | Edited by Sameer
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 02:03 PM IST
BJP leaders said similar slogans were raised at a rally of the ruling TMC on Tuesday but no one has been arrested for them
Close
Chief election commissioner Sunil Arora. (File photo)
Chief election commissioner Sunil Arora. (File photo)

Full EC bench in Bengal to take stock of poll preparedness, law and order

By HT Correspondent | Edited by Smriti Sinha
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 09:35 AM IST
The poll panel, headed by chief election commissioner Sunil Arora and election commissioners Sushil Chandra and Rajiv Kumar landed in Kolkata on Wednesday afternoon
Close
BJP's Suvendu Adhikari(ANI file photo)
BJP's Suvendu Adhikari(ANI file photo)

‘Goli Maaro’ chants at BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari’s rally in Bengal

PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 05:56 AM IST
Condemning the incident, Bengal BJP’s chief spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya said the party “does not endorse it”. “Our party does not endorse it at all. People carrying the BJP flag cannot talk like that,” he told mediapersons in Kolkata.
Close
The accident site in West Bengal's Jalpaiguri. (ANI Photo )
The accident site in West Bengal's Jalpaiguri. (ANI Photo )

13 dead, 18 injured in road accident due to fog in West Bengal's Jalpaiguri

ANI, Jalpaiguri
PUBLISHED ON JAN 20, 2021 09:02 AM IST
The driver of the truck survived the accident and has been detained. Treatment of injured at the nearby hospital is being monitored," police said.
Close
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addresses a public meeting.(PTI Photo)
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addresses a public meeting.(PTI Photo)

BJP as venomous as cobra, says Banerjee as rhetoric sharpens in Bengal

By HT Correspondent, Kolkata
UPDATED ON JAN 20, 2021 01:05 AM IST
  • Banerjee's comments came while addressing a Trinamool Congress (TMC) rally in Purulia district.
Close
BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari gestures during a roadshow from Tollygunge to Rashbehari in Kolkata, West Bengal( Samir Jana / Hindustan Times)
BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari gestures during a roadshow from Tollygunge to Rashbehari in Kolkata, West Bengal( Samir Jana / Hindustan Times)

Get a letterhead ready with ‘former CM’ written on it: Adhikari tells Mamata

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Shankhyaneel Sarkar, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 19, 2021 06:08 PM IST
  • Banerjee had said on Monday she will contest the assembly elections from both Nandigram and Bhawanipore constituencies.
Close
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee. (PTI)
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee. (PTI)

West Bengal assembly election: Mamata Banerjee to contest from Nandigram

UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 03:44 PM IST
TMC MLA from Nandigram and former minister Suvendu Adhikari shifted to the Bharatiya Janata Party on December 19, 2020
Close
President of BJP’s Bengal unit Dilip Ghosh.(HT File Photo)
President of BJP’s Bengal unit Dilip Ghosh.(HT File Photo)

BJP cautions Bengal leaders against 'discussing internal moves' with outsiders

By HT Correspondent, Kolkata
UPDATED ON JAN 17, 2021 11:56 PM IST
  • The leaders said in view of the upcoming assembly elections, nobody is henceforth allowed to discuss crucial organisational decisions, policy matters with outsiders.
Close
Trinamool Congress MLA Jitendra Tiwari.(ANI)
Trinamool Congress MLA Jitendra Tiwari.(ANI)

Eyes on polls, TMC reshuffles three district units; Jitendra Tiwari sidelined

By Tanmay Chatterjee, Kolkata
UPDATED ON JAN 17, 2021 11:45 PM IST
  • The most significant reshuffle was made in West Burdwan where two adjacent Lok Sabha seats are represented by Union ministers Babul Supriyo and SS Ahluwalia.
Close
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addresses a public meeting. (PTI Photo)
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addresses a public meeting. (PTI Photo)

Covid-19: Mamata administration questions Centre’s vaccination data

By Joydeep Thakur, Hindustan Times, Kolkata
PUBLISHED ON JAN 17, 2021 03:15 PM IST
  • A senior official of the West Bengal government said on Saturday that that the state had set a target to vaccinate 20,700 health workers on the first day.
Close
TMC MP Satabdi Roy said that she had discussed all her grievances with Abhishek Banerjee, the chief minister's nephew.(HT_PRINT)
TMC MP Satabdi Roy said that she had discussed all her grievances with Abhishek Banerjee, the chief minister's nephew.(HT_PRINT)

After rebellion, TMC MP Satabdi Roy made party’s Bengal vice-president

By HT Correspondent, Kolkata
UPDATED ON JAN 17, 2021 03:17 PM IST
  • The elevation comes amidst talk that an aggrieved Roy may join the BJP after a possible meeting with Union home minister Amit Shah in New Delhi.
Close
A nurse administers the COVID-19 vaccine to a frontline worker after the virtual launch of the COVID-19 vaccination drive at a Hospital in Kolkata on Saturday. ((ANI Photo))
A nurse administers the COVID-19 vaccine to a frontline worker after the virtual launch of the COVID-19 vaccination drive at a Hospital in Kolkata on Saturday. ((ANI Photo))

Kolkata nurse stable, experts try to find cause of illness post vaccination

PTI, Kolkata
PUBLISHED ON JAN 17, 2021 02:55 PM IST
The health department official, who is also a prominent doctor, said the experts are examining her condition as of now, and the analysis might take some time.
Close
“I am absolutely fine. The wait for the vaccine is finally over but we cannot let our guards down against the virus,” Dr Anima Halder said
“I am absolutely fine. The wait for the vaccine is finally over but we cannot let our guards down against the virus,” Dr Anima Halder said

‘Necessary for docs to take first shot to break any myths’

By HT Correspondent, Kolkata
PUBLISHED ON JAN 17, 2021 03:44 AM IST
“It was a nice feeling to have received the vaccine on the first day. It was also necessary for doctors to take the first shot as it would break any myths and encourage others to come forward to take the vaccine.” said Dr Anima Halder.
Close
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee.(File photo)
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee.(File photo)

'Will bear cost': Mamata Banerjee requests Centre for adequate supply of vaccine

By HT Correspondent, Kolkata
UPDATED ON JAN 17, 2021 12:01 AM IST
As many as 14 out of 15,707 vaccine recipients developed adverse effects after immunisation while health of a nurse turned serious after taking the jab.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP