Two Hindu priests have been arrested on charges of eating vital organs from the corpse of a child in the belief they would gain supernatural powers, Indian police said today.
“Our investigations revealed the pair exhumed the body on Friday and after lopping off its head they devoured its heart, liver and other soft organs, thinking the act would give them with immense powers,” Jaunpur police chief Abhay Kumar Prasad said.
“We have also found the half-eaten headless corpse after interrogating these two men,” Mr Prasad said.
Villagers alerted police yesterday after finding the head of an 18-month-old infant they had buried three days previously.
Brijvasi Mishra, aged 53, and his student Vishal Misra, 23, were caught in northern Uttar Pradesh state’s Jaunpur district.
The priests follow an ancient Hindu cult which once permitted cannibalism and the use of human corpses in various rituals. It was first banned in the 18th century when India was a British colony.