PATNA: The bodies of five members of a family were found hanged in their home in Samastipur district of Bihar on Sunday morning.
The incident happened in Mau village under Vidyapatinagar police station.
Police said the deceased were identified as head of household Manoj Jha (42), wife Sundermani Devi (38), mother Sita Devi (65) and two sons Satyam (10) and Shivam (7 years old).
Soon after getting information, a police team from Vidyapatinagar Police Station rushed to the village and inquired with fellow villagers especially neighbors about the incident. Later, a team from the Forensic Laboratory (FSL) was also called to the village to collect the necessary parts on the spot.
The villagers told the police that the family was in debt. Manoj, who used to operate a small tobacconist shop for a living, had taken out loans from several people and he was unable to repay the loan amount which had risen to more than Rs 3 lakh. Manoj’s wife, Sundermani, had also taken out a loan from a women’s group.
“The issue of the death of all members of a family was brought to the attention of the villagers on Sunday morning when some female lenders arrived at Manoj’s house to collect money. As no response came from the house after repeatedly knocking on the door, the visiting women informed the neighbors who, in turn, peeked into the house from broken parts of the walls and windows to find all the hanged members,” said a police officer who attended the scene. , said TOI on Sunday.
“On the face of it, this appears to be a case of mass suicide,” the police officer, who did not want to be identified, told TOI.
However, the married daughter of Manoj who came to the village after hearing about the death of the whole family, said that it was not a mass suicide but a case of murder. She alleged that the money lenders murdered Manoj and all his family members as the poor family was unable to repay them Rs 3 lakh which she borrowed to marry her daughter a few months ago .
The DySP, Dalsighsarai, Dinesh Kumar Pandey who attended the scene said the police were investigating the case from the angle of suicide and murder.
Police have already taken statements from many co-villagers and are awaiting autopsy and FSL reports, he told media.

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