Influenced by spirits, Rajasthan priest shoots self dead

Jaipur: A 23-year-old priest was found dead today alongside a 20-year-old critically injured woman in the premises of a temple in Pratapgarh district of Rajasthan, with the police suspecting “influence of spirits” being the reason behind the incident.

Both of them are residents of Kulthana village where the temple is situated. They had bullet injuries on their heads and allegedly took the extreme step “under the influence of spirits”, police said.

The priest has also recorded a video of the entire episode before shooting himself, they said.

Two suicide notes have been from the spot and a case has been under section 174 (unnatural death) the CrPc.

The woman is undergoing treatment at a hospital in Udaipur and her statements will be recorded by a magistrate, whereas the priest’s body was handed over to family members after post mortem examination, police said.

“It doesn’t seem to be a case of love affair. It is nowhere mentioned in the suicide note that they wanted to get married or had a love affair. It seems to be a matter of eccentricity. The priest was revered by villagers for his connect with the spiritual world,” Hathuniya SHO Rajendra Singh told PTI.

“He might have taken the girl under influence, which resulted into the incident, SHO Hathuniya Rajendra Singh told PTI.

He said that the priest saved the video recording of the incident in a mobile phone, pen drive and also uploaded it on the internet before shooting himself.

“We are getting the statements of the woman to know what conspired before the incident. We are also getting the mobile phone and pen drive examined from technical experts,” the SHO said.

According to the police, the woman often visited the temple to offer prayers and came in the priest’s contact nearly a year ago.