In Elanthoor, a peaceful town in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala, traditional healer and Haiku poet Bhagaval Singh and his wife Laila were detained by police on October 11 for reportedly murdering two women in “human sacrifice” and potentially consuming their flesh.
The pair was characterised by neighbours as a well-educated, wealthy family who always showed courtesy to others although they were still in shock over the deaths.
Singh was well-known as a social worker in the neighbourhood and came from a reputable family of healers. His neighbour said that they had never overheard him yell at anyone.
Singh had more than 1,100 followers on the social networking site Facebook, where he was also rather active. His platform bio stated that he worked “self-employed in alternative medicine.” Singh frequently shared haikus on Facebook, a traditional 17-syllable non-rhyming Japanese poetry.
As per his Facebook bio, he studied at Kerala University and St Thomas College in Kozhencherry.
Self-employed in the field of alternative medicine and Marma system of therapy which is well spread and accepted by people. I plant and nourish various species of herbs of great medical value. Under the supervision of academic personnel we treat accident-born complaints, various types of arthritis, paralysis, born setting and after cure (sic)His Bio
Singh first connected with Mohammed Shafi alias Rasheed, the primary suspect in the grisly murder, on Facebook. Shafi, who was allegedly a “sexual deviant” and a “sadist,” persuaded Singh and his wife Laila to carry out the “human sacrifice” in order to solve their financial problems.
On October 6, more than a week after the group of three killed Padma, Singh made his final post on Facebook. Two mysterious Malayalam poems were posted, one of which included the following line: “A furnace, blacksmith’s wife at work, her body bent over.”
How it all started!
Police claim that the drama began when Laila, the second wife of 68-year-old Bhagaval Singh, saw an invitation on Facebook for “people who are interested in rich life.”
Following the couple’s exploration of the post, Singh, also known locally as “Vaidyan,” got a friend request from a person going by the name of “Sreedevi” who claimed to be an admirer of his Haiku poetry.
After a while of regular online communication between Singh and “Sreedevi,” the latter persuaded the poet-healer to seek the aid of a “occult practitioner” named Rasheed from Perumbavoor in Ernakulam in order to amass enormous money.
Bhagaval Singh and Laila had no idea that the person posing as “Sreedevi” was actually 52-year-old Rasheed, also known as Mohammed Shafi, hiding behind a false profile. Rasheed started going to Singh’s house in Elanthoor on a daily basis after being “introduced” to the couple by “Sreedevi.” Singh, Laila, and Rasheed soon developed close ties.
Police sources claim that when Rasheed informed the couple that he would have to have sex with Laila in front of Singh at their house—which was situated in a remote area surrounded by other unoccupied homes—he started the first act of his scheme.
The couple succumbed in after becoming oblivious to the lure of luxury and money. According to police sources, Singh used to see Rasheed having sex “with folded hands” on his wife. Later, according to reports, Rasheed persuaded the couple that in order to become affluent, they had to engage in “human sacrifice” to “cleanse their sins.”
The police said that their first victim, Roselin, was slain on June 6 and their second victim, Padma, on September 26. The trio dismembered the victims’ bodies with knives before burying them in the couple’s Pattanamthitta property.
The sister of the second victim promptly reported her as missing on September 26, the day of her death, and it is what led to the arrest of the trio.
Main Accused Mohammed Shafi alias Rasheed to Undergo Psychological Examination
According to municipal police commissioner C Nagaraju, Mohammed Shafi, the main suspect in the dramatic human sacrifice case that claimed the lives of two women, would undergo a psychiatric evaluation. Additionally, he stated that the murder site, including the accused’s home and the nearby land in Elanthoor village in the Pathanamthitta district, where the victims’ bodies were buried after being hacked into pieces, will undergo a thorough forensic analysis.
Shafi is a sexual pervert and a sadist with a mindset to cause injury, harm, and death. We will conduct a proper psychological examination on him. An expert doctor from the Thrissur government hospital will conduct his psychological evaluationNagaraju told PTI.
We will thoroughly examine the house, the land where the bodies were buried, and in fact, the whole property. They have cleaned the premises after the murder. So, we need to examine the traces of dry blood from the scene
Shafi is a history-sheeter, according to the officer, with about 10 complaints filed against him in the previous 15 years. The incidents vary from a 75-year-old being raped to straightforward stealing and drunken driving.
The rape of the 75-year-old woman in 2020 was brutal as he had inflicted severe injuries on her private parts. Similar injuries were made on the latest victims alsoNagaraju
When the government had to make room in jails due to the pandemic, Shafi was detained in connection with that rape case but was released on bond, in accordance with a government regulation, he said. The three accused were given 12-day police custody of them on Thursday so that evidence could be gathered and the crime could be further investigated.