The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) charged a 53-year old man from Lumang in Trashigang for voluntary manslaughter.
The case was registered in the Nganglam drungkhag court yesterday.
The accused was charged for murdering a 11-month-old baby after he repeatedly hit with a religious instrument (dorji) while performing ritual.
The incident happened around 8pm of May 29 this year when the child’s father called the accused to perform a ritual, as the child was sick.
The accused was alleged of asking the parents to leave the child with him alone in the room, saying he cannot extract poison from the child if people born in the year of horse, dragon, ox and snake are present in the room. Accordingly, the parents waited outside the room.
The parents heard a loud cry from inside and went to check and found the child bleeding from the head with a big cut.
The parents tried to intervene and take the child to hospital, but the man hit the child with the dorji three more times on the head saying that the child has been possessed and it would kill both the parents. The child died instantly.
According to OAG charges, the man hit the child around 18 times on the head and forehead in the course of the ritual.
OAG also submitted to the court to make Nu 450,000 as his compensation to the parents and an additional Nu 42,875 for the expense incurred on funeral rites.
He has been charged with section 141 of the Penal Code of Bhutan with second felony sentence.
The accused, who is a former soldier, was working with the Bhutan Development Bank as a security guard in Nganglam.
The accused neither had experience in religious activities nor a monk but performed basic rituals in the locality.
OAG charges stated that although the accused had been performing rituals, he has no such powers to subdue demons and local deities. “His act was lethal in society.”