New Delhi: Four persons were killed by 10 to 12 unidentified miscreants in Gumla city of Jharkhand over allegations of witchcraft. The incident took place on Saturday near the Sisayi police station. An investigation in the case is underway.

Anjani Kumar Jha, the Superintendent of police of Gumla said, “Prima facie, it appears the victims were involved in witchcraft. Crime seems to have happened because of superstitious beliefs. Investigation underway.”

Of the four deceased, two were men and two were women. They were allegedly thrashed to death with sticks and rods. As per a report, the victims belonged to three families in Gumla. The deceased were identified as Bhagat (65), Champa Bhagat (65), Peti Bhagat (60), and Fagni Devi (60).  The murder of the four people has gripped the locals in the area with fear.

In yet another incident on January, six persons were arrested for killing five members of a family on suspicion of witchcraft in Koira area of Odisha’s Sundargarh district, police said. There were past instances of feud between the accused persons and the family of the deceased, he said adding those arrested had earlier claimed that the woman practised witchcraft and caused harm to them.

(With Agency inputs)