Summary: BHUBANESWAR: Cases of witch-hunt continue across the state despite the state government claims of initiating steps to curb the menace. Villagers had killed two persons - Ganga Gamang, 60, and Biri Sundaray, 45 - of tribal-dominated Chudangpur village in Gajapati district, suspecting them to be sorcerers. Six members of a family, including four children, were killed by residents of Lahanda village in the district on suspicion of the family practising witchcraft. When four people died in the village due to illness, the villagers suspected the duo's role in doing black magic, and killed them. The state has witnessed 26 murders in 2015 after Jharkhand's 32.Though the state government has introduced Odisha Prevention of Witch Hunting Act in 2013, such cases continue.A Odisha Rationalist Society report said 355 people have been killed in the state in the last six years in various witchcraft-related crimes.
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