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Orissa girl sacrificed for good harvest


Bhubaneswar : A 10-year-old girl in an Orissa village was beheaded by her grandfather, who believed that sowing seeds mixed with her blood would yield a bumper crop, police said Monday.

The barbaric incident, spurred by age-old superstitions, took place Sunday at the tribal-populated Adapathar village in Sambalpur district, over 450 km from here. The heinous crime came to light after villagers caught the man, Rajesh Hembram, and handed him over to the police.

Hembram, 52, has around three acres of agricultural land. To get a good harvest, he had planned in advanced to sow seeds mixed with the blood of his granddaughter on Akshaya Tritiya Monday, a day considered auspicious by Hindus, police said.

“He cut off his granddaughter Bernaka Kandulana’s head with an axe in a room when nobody was at home and drained her blood into a pot,” P.C. Nayak, inspector in charge of the local police station, told IANS.

“We found some seeds in a steel pot that were mixed with blood,” he said. “The man has been arrested and has confessed that he kept it to sow in his field on Akshaya Tritiya,” he said.

Bernaka’s head and the remaining part of the body were also found in the same room, the official added.