Five held for defiling graveyard in Meghalaya

Shillong: Five men were arrested on Saturday night for 'desecrating' a graveyard at Lawmali, police said. "The group was found deep inside Lawmali cemetery late on Saturday night," a police officer said.

The arrested have been identified as Rapme Dkhar (22) from Nongrim Hills, Brandon Jyrwa (21) from Jaiaw Laitdom, Raphael Waniang (21) from Upper Mawprem, Kyrshanlang Ryntathiang (19) and Ferdinand Massar (35), both residents of Mawlai, police said.

According to East Khasi Hills SP, M Kharkrang, said, "We strongly suspect the five have been involved in prior instances of grave desecration. We are interrogating them."

Following rising incidents of grave desecration, the administration has imposed Section 144 of the CrPC in and around its graveyards.

A few months ago, a group of young men were apprehended in Tura in the Garo Hills for allegedly being involved in 'devil worship'. With growing reports of 'satanic worship' in the predominantly Christian state, particularly in the strife-torn Garo Hills region, the Meghalaya government has initiated steps, including spreading awareness against cults, to curb 'the menace'. "Night patrols are being carried out regularly," a cop said.