The police have arrested a woman tantrik identified as Babita of Tighra village in Gurgaon Haryana, for allegedly killing four children of members of her family for want of a son. She also allegedly conspired to kill other children of her relatives.
The family has revealed that on May 10, 2007, two-year-old Gaura, son of Ajit Kumar, went missing in the morning. His body was reportedly found from the house of his brother Bhopal, who lives nearby.
On August 23, 2007, Ajit’s two-and-a-half-year-old son Mahesh also went missing and his body was again found from Bhopal’s house. Similarly, other two children’s bodies were found from Bhopal’s house. Babita does not have a son but has a daughter.
Some years back What was common between two incidents of child sacrifice reported from Mehboob Nagar of Andhra Pradesh and Bhambewa in Jind district of Haryana? That the murderer was one of the parents and that the murderer reportedly acted on the advice of a black magician.
Unfortunately, there seems to be no legal provision to handle this problem except for section 508 of IPC, which in itself has nothing more to offer than suggesting penal action for making someone believe that he or she could be harmed in some way as a result of some kind of a divine displeasure. While this provision is non-cognisable, bailable, envisaging punishment of a year with fine, or both, it’s not enough to handle such problems in a country of believers, where occult practices are rather common. Needless to say, quite often black magic practitioners create a make believe world for their subjects and end up taking their lives. No wonder infants and children continue to be victimised by the so-called exorcists, witch doctors and tantrik.
Although only a tip of the iceberg, reports from all over the nation over the last decade indicate that such medieval practices continue unabated, largely with impunity. Take for instance a case in Jalandhar 7 years ago. A 2 years old child, Balwinder, was brutally killed. Not only was his heart taken out, but his skull was nailed by an issueless couple to please some deity. Then, in Saharanpur (UP), a 12-year-old boy Pradip was allegedly taken by a couple to the fields and stabbed by one, Jagdish, while his female accomplice, Maina, recited mantras. Then, in Chhidbaha, a village in Saharanpur district again, one Surjit killed his 2 brothers, a son and wife. The motive again was rooted in black magic.
In another case, a 13-year-old boy was lynched for sacrifice and one of the perpetrators, Somnath, was subsequently killed by agitated villagers in Sarasawa tank of this very district in Uttar Pradesh. And yet another 8-year-old boy was sacrificed at Umritala village of Saharanpur.
Near Saharanpur, in Muzaffar Nagar district of UP, a 5-year-old girl was allegedly killed for sacrifice by a middle-aged woman in village Sisoli. Two days prior to this, an 8-year-old boy was killed in the nearby village of Kurka.
Then, in 1993 a 6-year-old Rajinder Bishnoi was allegedly killed in a Hisar village in Haryana and later on a couple was arrested for being behind the alleged “sacrifice”. On March 6 the same year, Ramesh Kumar of Ellenabad allegedly killed his 2 sons by hitting them on the head for black magic. In Kurak village of Karnal, Haryana, an issueless couple at the instance of a tantrik set a buffalo on fire but while attempting to cut the hair of a girl for alleged sacrifice, they were overpowered by residents of the locality.
In another case of kidnapping children for sacrifice, one such incident was reported from the same district, where one Ram Chandra and a woman of Shamgarh, namely Jogindro, were alleged to be involved in the crime. In this case a 2-year-old was rescued from Jogindro. Then in Kaithal, Haryana, a case of witchcraft was reported from Barot village when 18-year-old Krishan was allegedly beaten up by Kala a witch-doctor. In the same region in Mundhal village of Bhiwani, a year old child was allegedly sacrificed and his body was recovered from a pond. Just as expected, an issueless couple and some tantriks were reported to have been involved in the crime.
It is both ironic and unfortunate that human sacrifice continues even after we have stepped into the 21st century. While the fact that such primitive practices are not restricted to rural areas alone makes it ironic, what makes matters worse is, such macabre incidents continue to thrive under the cloak of “spirituality” in a spiritually enlightened nation like india, with not many provisions to curb such anti-social and criminal activities.
It is time we realised all the above mentioned instances of child sacrifice reinforce the need for effective provisions in the Indian Penal Code against sundry tantriks. At the same time it is necessary to spread education along with literacy so as to discourage people from going for something so harebrained in the first place.