Berhampur: In a bizarre incident, six elderly persons were thrashed mercilessly and forced to eat human faeces by a group of villagers over suspicion of practicing witchcraft at Gopalpur village under Khalikote police limits in Ganjam district on Monday.
The victims have been identified as Jogi Das, Rama Nahak, Hari Nahak, Sania Nahak, Jogendra Nahak, and Juria Nahak. All of them are native of Harijan Sahi in Gopalpur village.
According to sources, after three people died of an unknown disease and a few residents fell sick, the villagers suspecting six elderly persons behind the death of the persons detained them.
Later, the villagers tied them with rope and forced to eat human excreta, added sources.
On receiving information, Khalikhote Tehsildar Chittaranjan Mahanta and Ganjam SP Brijesh Ray along with the police personnel reached the village to rescue the victims.
However, the irate villagers attacked the government officials with chilli powder and pelted stones at them.
Finally, the police and the administration managed to rescue the victims and arrested more than 50 people including women in this regard.