17 get lifer for immolating couple on suspicion of sorcery in Odisha’s Jajpur

Bhubaneswar: Altogether 17 people were today sentenced to life imprisonment in connection with the immolation of a couple on suspicion of practicing sorcery in Jajpur district of Odisha in 2020.

Jajpur Additional District and Sessions Judge Hrusikesh Acharya convicted them after examining as many as 20 witnesses and other evidence to the case, said public prosecutor Rajat Kumar Rout.

As per the case records, some villagers had barged into the house of couple—Shaila Balmuj and Sambari Balmuj—at Nimapali village under Kalinganagar police limits in Jajpur during the late hours of July 7, 2020 and attacked them on suspicion of practicing sorcery.

They later set the couple’s house on fire. The husband-wife duo was charred to death.

The police had registered a case in connection with the incident and arrested as many as 17 villagers.

The judge also slapped a penalty of Rs 10,000 on each of the convicts, added the public prosecutor.

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