Police in Karnataka’s Ramanagaram district have arrested four people in connection with the murder of a 10-year-old girl, who they believed was sacrificed in a black magic ritual to cure her ailing uncle, The Hindu reported. Ayesha, a Class 4 student from the town of Magadi, had gone missing on February 28, and her body was found in a gunny bag along three days later. Police suspected black magic when they discovered some turmeric and a lemon in the bag with her, The News Minute reported.
The uncle, Mohammed Wasil, 42 was among those arrested. Police said he was allegedly advised to kill the girl by a resident of Goripalya named Naseem Taj, who claimed a potential sacrifice would cure Wasil of a stroke he had previously suffered. “She [Taj] had suggested that Wasil had been gripped by evil spirits and left paralysed,” the police told the English daily.
Local residents stormed Wasil’s house after the incident came to light. Police were originally probing a property dispute angle after the girl’s parents had filed a missing persons complaint.
Several cases of black magic have been reported from the state in the past. Practitioners are known to suggest the sacrifice of a pre-pubescent girls in return for major boons. In 2016, a believer in black magic cursed Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.