16 arrested for burning alive woman in Chhattisgarh

March 27th, 2008 - 4:42 pm ICT by admin  

Raipur, March 27 (IANS) Sixteen people including five women have been arrested for allegedly burning alive a 40-yr-old tribal woman in Korea district of Chhattisgarh after beating her for hours with hot iron rods, a police officer said Thursday. “The woman, who belonged to the Gond tribe, was beaten for hours with hot iron rods before being set on fire in the presence of dozens of villagers. They accused her of witchcraft and claimed she was responsible for the recent deaths of three children in the village,” A.M. Juri, district superintendent of police, told IANS.

The woman called Phulkanwar was killed Sunday in Dholpur village, about 500 km north of here. A case was registered Wednesday when her husband Harilal Singh reported the tragedy to the police.

“We have strong evidence against 17 people and 16 of them have been arrested. The one person who is absconding will also be arrested soon,” Juri said.

Besides murder, the 17 have been charged under the stringent Chhattisgarh Witchcraft (Prevention) Act, 2005.

Crimes against women accused of witchcraft are common in Chhattisgarh’s northern and southern regions.

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