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Orissa labourers' palms chopped off

Bhawanipatna (Odisha), Dec 17, 2013 (PTI) 16:24 IST
DH Illustration: For representational purpose
In a gruesome incident, palms of two labourers were chopped off allegedly by labour agents at Belpada forest of Odisha's Balangir district, police said today.

The two labourers, who hail from Kalahandi district in the state, are in a critical state since the incident on Sunday. The two had got themselves admitted to the hospital yesterday,the police said.

The two labourers, identified as Nilambar Dhangada Majhi and Bialu Nial were among the 12, including five woman from different villages under Utchla gram panchayat of Jaipatna block in Kalahandi district. They were taken by two agents about a fortnight ago with the assurance to provide them work in Raipur in neighbouring Chhatisgarh, according to a complaint lodged by victims' relatives.

At Raipur, however, the two agents Bimal Rout and Parshu Nayak handed over the two labourers to another person, Parme Rout who asked them to go to Hyderabad from there.

"After reaching Raipur, we were asked to go to Hyderabad. We did not agree and escaped the agent's clutches. While 10 of us managed to flee and returned to our village, Majhi and Nial got caught," one of the labourers said.

The two men were taken to Nuapada district, kept confined in a village and subsequently taken to Belpada jungle where the agents demanded that they repay the advance taken by all the 12 labourers. When they pleaded their inability, the agents allegedly cut off their palms, the police said.

The other labourers, who have meanwhile reached their villages, have alleged that they were getting threat calls from the agents demanding refund of the advance money given to them.

A case was registered with the police and a manhunt has been launched to find out the guilty, inspector-in-charge of town police station here Satya Kumar Nanda said.

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