MANS team visits Barsewada village, enquires witchcraft death issue.

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witchcraft case
MANS team members seen in front of the 'Thana' of Jamni Bai.

Gadchiroli May 7 (District Correspondent) The workers of Maharashtra Andhasraddha Nirmulan Samiti (MANS) paid a visit to the relatives of the witchcraft victims of village Barsewada in Etapalli taluka recently and enquired about the tragic incident that rocked the entire state.

It was found during the visit that the horrific murders took place out of misunderstanding and the foul message spread by the rival pujari of the village about the ‘witchcraft’. The ‘close relations’ between the deceased duo can also be one of the reasons behind their killing.

A team of workers led by senior MANS activist Vilas Nimborkar met Lalu Rainu Madavi, Village Patil, Balaji Halami, former Sarpanch, Madhuji Madavi, Mangu Wadde, Madhukar Atlami and learned about the incident.

For the past five or six years, deceased Jamani Devaji Telami was haunted by ‘Devi’ hence she built a small hut (Thana) in her house to remove the disease from the bodies of the afflicted persons. However, no family member was participating in her task.

After a few days, Devu Atlami from the same village started supporting her. Due to this, some people in the village had a suspicion about the two. When the people of the village started bringing the sick person to Jamni Bai and some of them were benefited, they would refer the sick person to her the next time. However, those who were not benefited would refer the sick persons to another pujari.

Word of mouth about the symptoms of the female priest Jamni Bai gradually began to spread in the village. Therefore, in order to defame her, the other priest told a man that it was Jamni Bai and Devu who did the witchcraft to one of his family members. A four-year-old girl of that family died and the mother of the girl had also miscarriage. It was told by the rival priest that Jamani Bai is responsible for all this.

Even before this, such incidents happened in the village and every time the village meeting was held in which Jamni Bai and Devu were given warnings that they were troubling others by their witchcraft.

On the day when a four-year-old girl of the same Telami family died, Jamni Bai and Devu were not present in the village and when a meeting was called, the duo was not ready to say anything in front of the crowd. This increased the anger of the community against them. The younger son and her husband had already doubt over the relations between the two.

The own family members and the rival pujari took full advantage of the situation and vent their anger on the duo. They instigated the people saying if the duo remains alive, they will kill some more people by witchcraft. There was a quarrel among them at night during which Jamni Bai and Devu were badly assaulted by the mob in which both of them died.

To hide the death by beating, the villagers then took the bodies to the nearby nullah and set them on fire to show that they would have gone somewhere and have disappeared.

However, one of the villagers, who did not like all this, intimated the police and the murders came to light, it was known during the visit, told Mr. Vilas Nimborkar.

Besides Mr. Nimborkar, Vishnudas Lotane, Vitthalrao Kothare, Govindrao Brahmanwade, Nitesh Borkar, Sameer Sheikh, Prashant Telkuntalwar, Sachin Motkulwar, Kishor Mallewar, Suraj Jakkulwar were present in the visiting team.

 

 

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