No case against this Bihar village in 50 years


Patna: A village in Bihar has set an example for society by not having any cases registered with the police in the past five decades. The feat is unusual in a state that has reported around 260,000 cognisable offences every year, according to police records.

As per an official report, Bihar has reported over two million cognisable offences in the past 10 years. But Jamua village in eastern Bihar’s Banka district has been an exception.

It’s not that there have been no disputes at this village, home to around 600 people from various social strata. Instead, a five-member committee of villagers sits down and sorts out the dispute. The rare initiative has resulted in no cases registered against any villagers with the local police stations or in the courts.

“Whenever there is any dispute at the village, the matter is instantly referred to us. Then, we sit and discuss the issues with warring sides and finally settle the case right at the village. The police have no role to play in our case,” a village committee member Shailendra Kumar Singh said.

Villagers said the initiative has not only prevented them from making rounds of the police stations and the courts but also helped them save their hard-earned money.

“We all know how the cases have been lingering in the courts for decades. Carrying a legal battle in the courts not only kills a lot of time but also money, so we are happy with the arrangement,” said another villager Pankaj Singh. According to him, they are only carrying forward the practice as set by the village elders.

Last week, the village committee settled a three — year-old dispute in the family of Yugal Prasad Singh over a small piece of land that had resulted in violent attacks in the past.

“Soon after the matter came before us, we called both sides, heard their grievances and settled this years-old dispute. Acting on our appeal, the rival factions have given us in writing that they will not indulge in any unlawful acts in future. Now, they are happy,” added Shailendra Kumar Singh.

The local police have appreciated the initiative of the villagers and asked the other villages to learn from them.

“This is a wonderful initiative which every village should follow. We salute their action,” the local Banka district superintendent of police Arvind Kumar Gupta said.

Bihar has a total of 45,103 villages.

Another police official Vinod Kumar said there is no record of any case registered against any villagers with the Belhar police station under which this village falls.

According to the National Judicial Data Grid website, over 1.67 million cases were pending in various district courts of Bihar while 145,110 cases were waiting for adjudication in the Patna High Court as of February last year.

Of the total number pending in the Patna High Court, 16.54 per cent were pending in the court for over 10 years whereas 30.12 per cent were pending for two years, reports said.

Jharkhand: Villagers blame Bajrang Dal workers for Khunti lynching


Atribal man was beaten to death by angry villagers in Jharkhand over suspicion of selling beef. Two other men injured in the mob attack are now stable.

Speaking to India Today TV, locals from Suari village under Karra PS of Khunti district expressed shock and grief over the death of Kalantus Barla. Villagers claimed that workers from Bajrang Dal were behind the attack.

Police, however, have arrested some people from adjacent Jaltanda village on the basis of suspicion.

It all started when word spread that the three tribal men–Kalantus Barla, Philip Horo and Phagu Kachchap–were selling beef. As soon as the news spread, several workers of Bajrang Dal came to the spot and beat the three men, villagers added.

They were brutally thrashed with sticks following which Barla succumbed to his injuries and the two others are receiving treatment at separate hospitals.

Women from Suari village who spoke to India Today TV said they are upset with yesterday’s incident and vowed not to allow anyone from outside to enter the village.

The women added that they were performing a traditional ‘badgadi puja’ that involves the slaughtering of an animal and distribution of meat. It is performed every year in the village, the women added.

Expressing sorrow over Barla’s death, they indicated that he was not at fault and had only come to his sister’s place to participate in the puja. Barla was specially-abled and could not even run away, they added.

Philip Horo, who lost his wife around eight days ago, has no one to look after his old mother back home. Meanwhile, women from Hindu-dominated Jaltanda village are equally scared after the incident.

Speaking to India Today TV, they accused Bajrang Dal workers of being responsible for the mob attack, but are in fear after some of their relatives were picked up by police in connection with the lynching.

An uneasy calm prevails in the area as this is the first time when the two villages have been involved in such an incident over the past 100 years.

While police have arrested a few people on the basis of suspicion, investigations are underway to track all the perpetrators. Police officers investigating the case said nobody is allowed to take law in their hands and strict action will be taken against the perpetrators.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Brinda Karat visited RIMIS to meet one of the injured victims and termed Jharkhand as “lynchistan”.

Earlier in June, a 24-year-old man in Jharkhand’s Saraikela-Kharasawan, Tabrez Ansari, suffered a similar fate when he was beaten with rods after being tied to a pole for hours on suspicion of theft.

Sorceress kills woman with a trident in Jharkhand village


RANCHI: In an alleged case of practising illegal black magic, a sorceress allegedly killed a woman reportedly by stabbing her multiple times using a ‘Trishul’ (trident) to free her from the clutches of an evil spirit. 

The spine-chilling practice, which was conducted in the presence of the victim’s family, took place in Garhwa district of Jharkhand. 

The sorceress performed the ‘ritual’ inside a room while the woman’s family was waiting outside. They went inside on hearing her screams. 

Taking swift action, the police arrested the sorceress and her husband for killing the woman after the villagers informed about the incident.

“We have arrested the sorceress Alam Devi and her husband Satyendra Oraon immediately from their house in Sapahi village and an FIR has been lodged in this regard at Ramna Police Station. Sixty-year-old Rudni Devi was hit several times on her eyes, legs and stomach with a trident, who succumbed to her injuries on the spot on Saturday,” said officer-in-charge of Ramna Police Station Lal Bihari Rajak. 

The trident used for killing the lady has also been confiscated, he added.

Rajak said that multiple marks of stabbing have been found on the woman’s body while her eyes were gouged out and the nose was broken.

According to the family members, the woman was taken to the sorceress by them as she was ill for quite some time. Despite undergoing medical treatment, she failed to recover. They were told that an evil had taken possession of her body and hence they will have to stay there at her place in order to make her free from the spirit.

“We came here on August 14 from Bhawnathpur village, about 45 kilometers from here, and stayed at the sorceress’s residence as she performed black magic on her. All of a sudden on Saturday, she killed my mother by stabbing her several times on her body with a trident in the name of freeing her from the clutches of an evil spirit,” said Dinesh Oraon, victim’s son. 

“After hearing her screams, they entered the adjacent room where the sorceress was performing the black magic and saw her stabbing my mother with a trident. By the time we could understand anything, she was dead,” he added.

Digital dispensaries treating patients in Jharkhand’s ‘doctor-less’ villages


Digital dispensaries (telemedicine centres) where doctors diagnose and treat diseases through video-conferencing are turning out to be a boon for people living in remote villages of Jharkhand.

Launched by the Jharkhand government on February 20 this year, the digital dispensaries have provided medical services to around 79,000 rural people in 100 centres set up so far, officials at state unit of national rural health mission (NRHM) said.

Jharkhand has tied up with the Apollo Hospitals Enterprises Ltd for the telemedicine services. A panel of 30 doctors and specialists related to gynaecology, paediatrics, general medicine and dermatology, has been providing medical services from 10 am to 4 pm daily, excluding Sundays and national holidays, sitting in Hyderabad or Chennai.

The state government has converted 100 primary health centres, where doctors’ availability is negligible, into digital dispensaries.

Interestingly, rural women have shown more interest to the services. According to the dashboard of telemedicine centre, 78,550 patients have visited the digital dispensaries till 12.30 pm on Monday since February 20, of which 48,793 were females, while number of male patients was 29,735 in the state. The officials engaged in monitoring the patients footfalls at the centre said a total of 879 patients visited digital dispensaries till 4pm on Monday.

The NRHM’s IT (information technology) Cell head, Abanindra Kumar, said: “We had set target to treat at least 10 patient at each centre and 1000 across 100 centres daily, which was almost achieved. Now, we are targeting to raise the number patients to 20 at each centre daily and 2,000 across the centres in state.”

He, however, said there was lack of awareness about such facilities in some of the centres. “We are working to make it popular in such areas so that maximum people could get affordable and standard health facilities,” he said.

Dumka has the highest 11 such centres where more than 8922 patients have visited so far, while East Singhbhum, which has nine centres, has witnessed second highest 8762 patients till 12.30pm on Monday since February 20. Over 7241 patients have availed the facility from six centres in Ranchi district.

Maya Devi, 35, an anaemia patient from East Singhbhum district, said she visited telemedicine centre and found it very easy. “My disease was diagnosed by a doctor through video-conferencing and he advised me for haemoglobin test. Getting treatment in telemedicine centre is very easy as well as beneficial,” she said.

An auxiliary nurse midwife (ANM) and a lab technician are deputed in each digital dispensary. After registration of the patient, the ANM and lab technician would conduct vital tests for height, weight, blood pressure, sugar level, body temperature of the patient.

Patients can also avail medicines from the digital dispensaries, where 60 types of common generic medicines are stored. Besides, patients can also get to avail tests for malaria, typhoid, dengue, haemoglobin, urine analysis and pregnancy in the telemedicine centres.