Guwahati: A self-styled ‘godman’ was caught red-handed by villagers while he was trying to con a family by making them cough up Rs 40,000 to ‘ward off’ evil spirit from their house at Borjhar village in Assam’s Nalbari district.
As per sources, the accused — identified as Harekrishna Barman from Masalpur in Nalbari — took an amount of Rs 40, 000 from the family of Narayan Talukdar with the promise of casting away an evil spirit that has been allegedly haunting their house for a long time.
Talukdar’s family caught up with Barman a few days ago in order to find a ‘tantric’ solution for their ‘haunted’ house which they claimed was “possessed by an evil spirit”. The victim’s family revealed that the “evil spirit” had been causing much damage to their household.
The godman promised the victim’s family that he would help them get rid of the evil spirit if they allow him to perform some rituals at their house and which will cost around Rs 40,000.
Besides performing the rituals, Barman also provided the victim’s family with amulets (taweez) at a cost of over Rs 1,000 each.
Interestingly, the ‘godman’ was exposed when he “failed to get rid of the evil spirit” from Talukdar’s house within a stipulated time, despite performing all “tantric rituals”.
Villagers, who gathered at Taukdar’s residence during the rituals, also started to question the godman’s “powers” and caught him red-handed for fooling people with his claims.
Later, it was also revealed that Barman had fooled several others in the locality with a huge amount of money with the promise of curing diseases and to solve household-related problems.
Significantly, irate villagers demanded Barman to return all the money that he took from Talukdar’s family and made him promise that he would not perform any kind of ‘tantric’ rituals in the future.
Superstitions is usually attributed to a lack of education. But in India, educated people are also seen to observe the following beliefs that may be considered as superstitious. The beliefs and practices vary from region to region. The practices may range from harmless lemon-and-chili totems for warding off evil-eye to serious concerns like witch-hunting. Some of these beliefs and practices are centuries old and are considered part of the tradition and religion, as a result, the introduction of new prohibitory laws often faces opposition.