Family alleges harassment by gang of ‘occult practitioners’


Hardly four days after the brutal double murder of siblings reportedly by their parents in Madanapalle, yet another family of B. Kothakota, 150 km from here, complained to the police on Wednesday night that a ‘gang of occult practitioners’ had been extorting money from them for a year and deceived them into marry off their doctor daughter to a gang member, who later turned out to be a lorry driver.

According to information, a private medical practitioner Krishna Reddy, 55, his wife Nirmala, 48, of B. Kothakota, and their two daughters were said to be suffering from some health and financial issues since a couple of years ago. Some youth from B. Kothakota and surrounding villages allegedly involved in occult practices had ganged up and lured the family to perform some rituals to overcome their troubles. They forced the couple to spend huge amounts for performing secret rituals at burial grounds and forested areas. Last year, they made the family perform the marriage of their 24-year-old elder daughter, who was preparing for medical PG entrance, with one of them, identified as Charan, claiming he was a software engineer. The couple allegedly gave a hefty dowry to the groom, who was later found to be a lorry driver.

‘Intimidated’

After realising the deceit, the family tried to approach the police several times, but were reportedly intimidated by the gang. They allegedly intensified their extortion during the COVID-19 pandemic. Following this, the elder daughter allegedly left home, purportedly for exam preparation.

Deputy SP (Madanapalle) A. Ravi Manohar Achari said that based on the complaint from the couple, a case has been registered.

The youth allegedly involved in the case are said to be absconding.

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