A sessions court in Odisha’s Kalahandi on Saturday awarded life imprisonment to eight people for chopping hands of two migrant labourers three years ago. The eight, Prabesh, Vaikuntha, Arjun Bhoi, Ganghadar Das, Bana Majhi, Jayasen Thela, Bimala Rout, Mantu Nial and Parasuram Naik, were earlier convicted under the Bonded Labour Act and various sections of the IPC.
Watch What Else Is making News
Additional district and sessions judge Ananth Chandra Behra called the hand chopping a heinous crime against the society and added the sentence will serve as a deterrence.
The Supreme Court had expressed shock over the incident in 2014. “What is happening? What type of country we are living in? This type of incident does not happen even in the most primitive societies.’’
Labour contractor Prabesh and his men had chopped the right hands of tribal Nilambar Dhangdamajhi and Dalit youth Dialu Niyal Niyal for refusing to travel to Andhra Pradesh in December 2013. He had paid them Rs 14,000 each to work at a brick kiln and was furious over their refusal. A drunk Prabesh chopped the hands of the two in a forest in Bolangir.
Dhangdamajhi, 22, died in September after suffering from fever. His family did not have money to take him to hospital.
The state had taken note of his plight and sanctioned Rs 6.75 lakh for the two following the Supreme Court’s intervention in January 2014. They got Rs 1.25 lakh under the SC/ST Atrocities Prevention Act and were allotted homestead land and a house under a state government scheme. The two got prosthetic limbs from Christian Medical College, Vellore.