Boy, 7, ‘lured with chocolate’ and strangled to death in ‘black magic sacrifice’
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A man in India allegedly lured a boy to a pond with the promise of chocolate before killing him in a black magic sacrifice he hoped would give him a grandchild.
The seven-year-old went missing while playing outside his family home in Dhaiansahi village in Odisha's coastal Balasore district on September 13.
Police said the following day his body and blood-soaked clothes were found near a pond.
On Sunday local police arrested Laxmidhar Mallick, 52, for the boy's murder.
Khantapara police inspector Sanjay Parida said Mallick was anxious that his daughter-in-law still had not conceived a child after being married to his son for five years.
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His desire to be a grandfather led him on a bizarre path to the occult, Inspector Parida claimed.
He had reportedly taken his daughter-in-law to various quack doctors and even made her take Ayurvedic drugs in the hope she would fall pregnant.
Mallick also made offerings to various gods and goddesses but had been unsuccessful.
"He then consulted a local woman who often practised black magic and was said to be possessed by some spirit," Inspector Parida said.
"The woman reportedly advised him to sacrifice the child of his neighbour."
However, the New Indian Express reports Mallick became convinced he must sacrifice a child after a religious deity came to him in a dream.
Police believe the man lured his victim with chocolate while he was playing alone outside his house.
He then took the boy to a nearby pond where he strangled him, believing the child's death would produce a grandson.
When the boy's body was found, his family lodged a murder report.
An investigation led officers to Mallick, who confessed to the crime under interrogation.
On Sunday he was arrested at the Khantapara police station, along with his son Bhagrirathi who was also allegedly involved in the killing.
Odisha is the poorest state in India with low literacy and education rates, and black magic is still practised in some rural areas.
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