Balangir, July 16: Police have arrested seven more persons, including six women and a minor girl of the Majhi family, for killing of five members of the Thapa family at Thapapali village, about 20km from here, on July 14.
So far, 10 people have been arrested in the case. On July 14, the police arrested three persons. All the seven arrested accused have been remanded in judicial custody after a Balangir court had rejected their bail pleas. Three other accused, who were arrested on July 14 and being treated at district headquarters hospital here, have been shifted to VSS Medical College and Hospital at Burla after their condition had deteriorated.
Balangir sub-divisional police officer Narayan Naik said one of the 10 arrested in the case was a minor girl while two women had newborn babies with them.
“Rita Thapa is a minor, who has been an accused. She will be sent to Juvenile Reform House in Berhampur. We have seized the arms, four tabli (an axe like weapon) and an axe from a straw godown at Thapapali village,” he said.
Naik said that according to the complaint of Karunakar Thapa, the lone male survivor of the Thapas, the police had registered a murder case against 28 persons. “We have arrested 10 and are looking for the others, who have fled the village. It was a pre-planned murder as the accused in his house had performed a puja of the weapons and distributed sweets among the family members before going to kill the Thapa family members,” he said.
Naik attributed the murder’s cause to the enmity between two families. “It is fallout of the killing of a member of the Majhis by the Thapas last year,” he said. The two families have been at loggerheads over land dispute.
Saebani Majhi, whose husband Ekadasia Majhi had been killed allegedly by one Madrasi Thapa last year, didn’t regret the did of her family. “They killed my husband last year, and since then, we haven’t slept peacefully. We have not done any wrong by killing them,” said Saebani, who has also been arrested.
On July 14, five members of the Thapas were killed when they clashed with the Majhis in a field near the village.