10-year-old girl's murder an act of sorcery by neighbour: police

10-year-old girl's murder an act of sorcery by neighbour: police

4 held; prime suspect 'believed it will cure his paralysed brother'

The murder of a 10-year-old girl in Magadi town, 30 km west of Bengaluru, was an act of sorcery committed by a neighbour to cure his paralysed brother, police say.

Mohammad Waasil (42), a neighbour and a distant relative of the girl’s father, Mohammad Noorullah, was distressed after his elder brother, Mohammad Rafi, suffered a stroke about a month ago. Waasil was certain that it was the result of witchcraft performed by an unknown enemy of the family. He approached his sister, Rashidunnisa alias Rasheeda (36), who lives in Goripalya, west Bengaluru, and who is said to be well versed in black magic. He invited her over to find a solution to the problem. She suggested that they perform counter-witchcraft to cure Rafi of the illness and said this was possible only if they sacrifice a young girl.

Waasil thought of Ayesha, the daughter of his neighbour Noorullah, who would often come to his house to play. He decided to sacrifice her as she could be easily lured. He hatched a devious plan and also roped in Rasheeda’s friend, Naseem Taj (33), and Rafi’s 17-year-old son.

Accordingly, they abducted Ayesha around 9 pm on February 1. They gagged her with a polythene bag and tied her legs with a piece of cloth. They then tied lemons to her limbs and strangled her with her ribbon. Thereafter, they performed black magic on her. With their mission accomplished, they stuffed her body in a gunny bag on Rasheeda’s advice and dumped it in the bushes on the right side of a mosque in Magadi. Before fleeing, they laid some flowers and lemons near the body.

As Ayesha’s harried parents began searching for her, Waasil suggested that Noorullah file a missing complaint with the police. He heeded his advice and lodged the complaint on February 3. Police went into action and traced the body after some residents reported noticing it.

“Looking at the body, we were certain that it was an act of sorcery and black magic. Some residents testified that they had seen Ayesha moving with Waasil on the night of February 1. We picked him up for questioning and he spilled the beans. Later, based on his information, we arrested the three others,” IGP (Central Range) Seemant Kumar Singh told journalists on Sunday.

Singh further said more arrests were likely and that there also was a possible property angle to the savage crime.