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Witchcraft & Sorcery

This topic contains the Information related to Witchcraft & Sorcery

Witchcraft has been defined as harmful anti-social attitude and action, by possessing the evil powers with a pact with devils. It is the endeavour of the government to bring people out of this superstitions and practices.

What is Witchcraft?

Harmful anti-social attitude and action, by possessing the evil powers with a pact with devils

What is Banamati?

The belief that certain members of the community can harm others by supernatural means

How witchcraft is different from sorcerer?

A witch is a female with inherent supernatural power to harm others

A sorcerer is a conscious individual endowed with evil intentions, malice and hatred, having magical powers

Social sections affected

Socially and economically poor, women, SC, ST and BC

Causes for Banamati scare

  • Cultural belief
  • Social milieu
  • Oppressed and suppressed
  • Illiteracy
  • Ignorance
  • Lack of medical help
  • Political and social rivalries
  • Marital/personal problems
  • Psychological
  • Belief in supernatural and evil powers
  • Superstitions

Reasons for Banamati Belief

  • Poverty –80%
  • Illiteracy –80%
  • Lack of mobility –90%
  • Lack of health –80%
  • Suppression & oppression –70%
  • Superstitions & belief in mantras –95%

Who is suspected as Witch/Sorcerer?

  • Abnormal and strange behaviour
  • Stranger to village
  • Social feuds
  • Chanting something which others do not understand

Methods of torture of the suspected

  • Fine – Individual/family
  • Beating
  • Plucking of teeth
  • Cutting of tongue and ears
  • Breaking limbs
  • Disfiguring
  • Social outcast/boycott
  • Forced to vacate house/land
  • Driven away from village
  • Illegal occupation of property
  • False accusations
  • Torture of relatives
  • Burning alive
  • Mental torture

Recommendations to overcome this social evil

  • Awareness programmes against Banamati
  • Improve health facilities in rural areas
  • Mobile medical teams
  • Admit Banamati patients in hospitals and provide immediate medical care and educate against Banamati
  • Appoint psychiatrists & psychologists, medical social workers in Mandal HQ
  • Socio-economic uplift and poverty eradication measures
  • Improve communications (electronic & transport) in rural areas
  • Encourage NGOs
  • Start more schools in rural areas
  • Formal /Non-formal education
  • Include in School Syllabus lessons against Banamati
  • Make stringent laws against Banamati
  • Make Banamati offences cognizable
  • Strong punishment for offenders
  • Role of media (print & electronic)
  • Ban TV serials and Cinemas which strengthen Banamati belief
  • Promote Science Yatras/Magic Shows
  • Organize youth and women
  • Cultural programmes
  • Protect Banamati victims

Government's role

  • Dispel superstitions
  • Promote scientific temper
  • Provide medical facilities
  • Proactive role in fighting Banamati
  • Political will

Source: Portal Content Team

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