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By Our Reporter
SHILLONG: In the wake of the recent incident in Smit in which three persons were hacked to death for allegedly practising witchcraft, the village heads of the area have urged the State government to empower the local dorbar with “police and magisterial power”.
A delegation of Smit village elders met Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma on Monday and sought his intervention to stop witchcraft related violence from recurring.
Deliberating over the recent killings in Smit during the meeting on Monday, the village heads decided to send a request letter to the Chief Minister.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Sordar of Smit village, Kynsai Manik Syiem, said the proposed move would go a long way in assisting the district administration in maintaining law and order besides preventing recurrence of such incidents in future.
During the meeting it was also suggested that the Government should form response teams in the Madanryting police station to tackle such issues as the present jurisdiction of Madanryting police station covers the whole of Mawkynrew C&RD Block and a large part of Mawryngkneng and Mylliem C&RD Block.
While demanding that the village Dorbar should be provided with specific identity markers like jackets to enable them to use and assist the district administration, he also pointed out that the village defense party (VDP) was not well-equipped and it needed to be reviewed.
The Dorbar Shnong is also likely to convene an executive committee meeting to deliberate the issue.
The Sordar also urged police to nab those involved in the killing of the trio on Friday last.
It may be mentioned that a preliminary report on the August 16 killing will be submitted to the government on Tuesday. A magisterial inquiry will be conducted by ADM DM Wahlang. The report is expected to be submitted in 14 days time.
Govt to stress upon awareness programmes
Meanwhile, the state Law Minister Rowell Lyngdoh has stressed on conducting awareness programmes to curb this menace. Talking to newsmen here on Monday, Lyngdoh said people should be sensitized on the matter. Rowell also asserted that there were sufficient laws to tackle cases pertaining to superstitious beliefs.
As many as three cases have been reported in the East Khasi Hills district alone in the past one month where people have been victimized for allegedly practising witchcraft.