October 21, 2011
Jailwara, Bijapur district, Chhattisgarh, India
7-year-old Lalita Tati (pictured) is kidnapped, murdered, and mutilated, allegedly by two desperate farmers who sacrificed her for a better harvest
Lalita was abducted as she walked home after leaving a neighbor’s house. It is suspected that Lalita was targeted because her alleged killers, Ignesh Kujur and Padam Sukku, were embroiled in a feud with Lalita’s father, and local beliefs supposedly held crops would grow better if a child under the age of 12 was sacrificed.
After she was abducted, Lalita’s throat was sliced and her organs removed, allegedly to be offered to Durga, the Hindu Goddess of Victory and the Fierce Form of Mother Goddess. Her mutilated body was found six days after her murder.
Police initially suspected Lalita’s father of raping and murdering his daughter, but the father later received a letter, claiming to be from Lalita’s killers, apologizing for the act. Police then questioned Sukku and Kujur who confessed to the crime. It is alleged, however, the confession of sacrifice was forced from the suspects by police. Kujur’s son maintains the family is Christian and does not believe in sacrifices, and Lalita’s cousin has stated the area is not known for human sacrifices, despite what officials have said about rural “tribal” communities in India.
As of this writing, I could find no evidence of a trial for Sukku or Kujur, or any further information on the case.
- Schlesinger, Joachim. Traditional Human Sacrifices in Southeast Asia and Beyond. White Elephant Press, 2017
- Smith, Nicola. “Indian girl, 7, sacrificed ‘to improve harvest.'” The Ottawa Citizen [Ottawa, Ontario, Canada]. January 9, 2012
- Bhardwaj, Ashutosh. “In Chhattisgarh village, cops see human sacrifice in girl’s mystery death.” The Indian Express. January 6, 2012. Accessed October 21, 2018. http://archive.indianexpress.com/news/in-chhattisgarh-village-cops-see-human-sacrifice-in-girl-s-mystery-death/896343/
- “Seven-year-old girl sacrificed for ‘better harvest.'” NDTV. January 3, 2012. Accessed October 21, 2018. https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/seven-year-old-girl-sacrificed-for-better-harvest-567640