Police have arrested six women for their alleged involvement to assault another woman by branding her as a witch in Assam’s Biswanath district.
The incident took place at Diring tea garden area where some locals had allegedly assaulted a woman by branding her as a witch.
Following the incident, police safely rescued the victim identified as Urshila Loha and admitted her in a hospital.
According to the reports, a woman of the tea garden named Salmina Sanga suffered some ailments in the past couple of days and local villagers suspected that it happened only because of the black magic done by Urshila Loha.
On Monday night, some local people had captured Urshila and thrashed her.
When local police received the information, they immediately reached the area and rescued the woman from the clutches of the villagers and took her to a hospital.
A police officer of Biswanath district said that following the incident police arrested two women on Monday night and four others on Tuesday.
“Some people had assaulted a woman by branding her as a witch. A police team of Balichang police station had immediately reached the area and rescued the victim. Following the incident, an FIR was lodged and we had arrested six women for their alleged involvement in the incident,” the officer said.
To prevent such ‘witch hunting incidents’ in the state, the Assam Legislative Assembly on August 13, 2015, had unanimously passed the Assam Witch Hunting (Prohibition, Prevention and Protection) Bill, 2015 and President Ram Nath Kovind had approved the bill converting it to an Act in 2018.
The Act which imposes imprisonment of up to seven years, along with a fine of up to Rs 5 lakh, for branding someone as a witch.
A total of 107 people were killed in witch-hunting incidents in Assam in the last nine years.
According to the Assam government data, 84 people were died due to witch-hunting incidents in the state from 2011 to 2016 and 23 more people lost their lives to it till October 2019.