At a time when a rising number of cases of “braid chopping” has terrorised people in Jammu, the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) too has not offered any explanation for the mysterious phenomenon.
Recently, at least 35 women from various Jammu districts have reported that their braids “fell off” or were “cut off by a ghost”. Since Wednesday only, five such cases were reported in Jammu district including one in the heart of city, old Rehari, where one Radha Rani wife of Rattan Banotra said her braids had been “chopped off”.
In a bid to find out its cause, the police sent samples of the “chopped braids” to the FSL, where the scientists carried out tests for 10 days but found no convincing cause of the phenomenon.
“The hair samples of women have now been sent to the FSL-Srinagar for a detailed examination and police expect something concrete in the next 10 days,” an officer said.
While authorities struggle with finding answers, people are afraid to venture out in the dark. On the advice of self-styled godmen, who are cashing in on the fears, people have adorned the doors of their houses with branches of the Neem tree and lemon-and-chili good luck charms.
Rumours suggesting male private parts might be the next target have intensified the fears.
Greater Kashmir reporters travelled to several villages of RS Pura and Samba, where the fear is the most intense.