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Rigorous life imprisonment has been awarded by a court to six persons for killing a tribal man and his daughter about nine years ago in Odisha’s Sambalpur district.

Additional District Judge of Kuchinda, Padma Charan Das, yesterday convicted Lalit Topno, Methail Hembrum, Gaji Kujur, Ranjit Bag, Rajendra Bahala and Salim Kisan and awarded life term to them.

According to prosecution, the incident had taken place at Ragba village in the Govindpur police station area of Sambalpur on September one, 2004.

The accused had killed Bhimcent Hembrum and his daughter Berunica Hembrum suspecting that the father-daughter duo were causing harm to others by practising black magic.

They killed Bhimcent with a sharp-edged weapon and threw the body after setting it on fire. They subsequently strangulated Bhimcent’s daughter Berunica. They took the body of Berunica to the Sunakhandi forest area under the Rajgangpur police station and set it on fire.

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