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Four Tribal villagers lynched in Jharkhand after panchayat decides they practice black magic

 According to the locals, 10-12 people dragged the victims out of their houses and killed them.

Four Tribal villagers lynched in Jharkhand after panchayat decides they practice black magic

Jharkhand : Four members of a family including two women were killed by fellow villagers in central India's tribal heartland over allegations of witchcraft, authorities said on Sunday.

Four elders of a tribal family, all aged in their 60s according to local media reports, were attacked by around a dozen stick-wielding villagers outside their home late on Saturday.

Around a dozen masked men raided the Nagar Shikari village under Sisayi police station around 3 am on Saturday and picked up Shuna Bhagat (65) Fagni Devi (60) Champa Bhagat (65) and Peti Bhagat (60) from their house. Villagers on condition of anonymity said that an assembly (panchayat) was organised before the incident took place. Charges were framed against the four deceased that all of them were involved in the practice of witchcraft and black magic.

The four people were dragged to a distance from the village and lynched with traditional weapons such as sticks and iron rods.

SP Gumla, Anjani Kumar Jha, told ANI, "Prima facie it appears the victims were involved in witchcraft. The crime seems to have happened because of superstitious beliefs. An investigation is underway."

The killings have spread tension and fear among locals in the area. They are refusing to talk about the incident.

The police are already on the spot and investigation is on.

"People need to be wary of these issues. The police are already running campaigns on block and panchayat levels to spread awareness about these issues. We hope to see positive results in the coming time," Jha said. 

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