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1-min read

14 Arrested in Jharkhand For Tonsuring Villagers for Not Following Rituals

According to the FIR, the victims had refused to perform the rituals themselves following the death of a fellow villager and were forcibly tonsured and the nails of the women were trimmed on May 23 at Chhota Krishnapur village.

PTI

Updated:May 28, 2019, 7:10 PM IST
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14 Arrested in Jharkhand For Tonsuring Villagers for Not Following Rituals
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Jamshedpur: Fourteen of the 26 people charged with forcibly tonsuring the heads of nine men and trimming the nails of seven women in Jharkhand's Seraikela-Kharsawan district have been arrested, police said Tuesday.

The arrested persons include the gram pradhan Vikash Satpathi. They were produced before a local court, which send them to 14 days judicial custody on Monday, said Rajnagar police station, In-charge, Jitendra Kumar Singh.

Raids were on to nab the rest accused, he said. An FIR was filed on the complaint of one of the victims, Sushila Mahato, under IPC sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 341 (wrongfully restraining any person) and Prevention of Witchcraft Act, the police officer said.

According to the FIR, the victims had refused to perform the rituals themselves following the death of a fellow villager and were forcibly tonsured and the nails of the women were trimmed on May 23 at Chhota Krishnapur village.

Mahato, however, claimed that the accused did this as they alleged that the victims practise black magic. The police received information about the incident that took place in Chhota Krishnapur village on May 23.

Superintendent of Police Chandan Kumar Sinha had said that a resident of the village died recently and other villagers shaved their heads as per Hindu customs, but 16 men and women of 12 families refused to perform the ritual.

The victims worship a "Guru Maa" and they neither follow Hindu rituals nor go to temples, he said.

Considering their refusal inauspicious, the villagers held a meeting and directed the 16 men and women to take a bath and shave their heads so that they could be "purified", the SP said.

When the victims refused to obey the diktat, the villagers allegedly forcibly tonsured the heads of the men and trimmed the nails of the women, he said.

The victims did not inform the police directly as, Mahato claimed, they were supposed to do it through the village head.

The victims, who left their homes and took shelter at the 'Andh-Vishwas Unmulan Kendra' (Centre for Eradication of Superstition) in Birbans village, returned home with police protection and policemen have been deployed in the village, the officer said.

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