From a black cat cutting our path to a married woman forgetting to put on her sindhoor by default is considered to be a sign of superstition in India. Recently this week, a couple were arrested for their involvement in killing and eating a part of human flesh as a part of a witchcraft ritual, expecting financial prosperity.
As per NCRC (National Crime records Bureau) there were a total of 88 deaths reported in India as a result of these practices. In 2021, the number varied to 74 and altogether it is an approximation of 100 lives every year which India loses in the name of evil beliefs. There are also instances where superstitious beliefs are mistaken for Indian cultural and religious practices. A soothsayer stating a man that his wife will die soon after his marriage and as a result actions like purposefully entering into a marriage and killing the spouse to have a happy married life later are not unheard of. India stands as one of the top countries with the practice of witchcraft, superstition and cult practices.
In the scientific era, where liberalism is celebrated, it is highly shameful to have highly educated Indians indulge in such beliefs. Partially Indian cinemas and serials also indulged in promoting superstitious thoughts to add spice to their content. From 1950, the need for inculcation and enhancement of scientific temper was engraved in our Constitution. Like Sati system was prohibited, there is also a need for a central law against superstitious beliefs. Despite the reported cases of human sacrifice and death due to the cult practices, the states of Madhya Pradesh, Telangana and Kerala still do not possess any laws against the act.
Even though a bit late, Karnataka possesses the law against superstitions. Those who violate the provisions of the Act will be tried under various sections of IPC including Section 302 (murder) section 307 (attempt to murder) 308 (abetting suicide) if a person dies, gets hurt or commits suicide due to the offence under the Act.
Development doesn’t just mean infrastructural but it is also involved in adopting a scientific temper and being logical when dealing with day-to-day affairs. And so a Central law with stringent regulations and punishments is the need of the hour.