A 10-year-old boy, who was allegedly abducted, was found killed, with his body chopped into parts in Ratanpur, a religious town of Chhattisgarh's Bilaspur district, the police said here today.
While villagers strongly suspect it to be a case of human sacrifice, the police believe that it is a case of some wild animal attacking the boy.
The dead body of Harishankar, who went missing since Saturday, was found on the hills of the Lakhan Devi temple, with his head, hands and legs chopped off, Bilaspur Additional Superintendent of Police (Rural) J R Thakur told PTI.
According to the officer, on Sunday, Gulaba Bai, a native of Ratanpur, lodged a complaint that her son Harishankar had gone missing since Saturday afternoon, after which a kidnapping complaint was registered by the police.
During investigation, the priest of the Lakhan Devi temple informed that the victim had visited the hill temple on Saturday and left the place after sometime.
Later, an intense search launched in the forest about 100 metres from the temple yielded the victim's bloodstained clothes, he said.
The body of the boy, whose head, hands and legs were found severed from the torso were found deeper in the forest, besides corpses of two domestic goats and red bangles, he said.
A post mortem of the body revealed some wild animal's bite marks, indicating an animal attack on the boy, he said, although, a further investigation is likely to reveal more clues.
However, villagers rejected the claims of the police and said that Harishankar's death was the result of some rituals or black magic.
There is a possibility that wild animals might have eaten the child's body parts after they were thrown into the jungle, the villagers said.