Stage actress dies of snakebite while performing, quack detained


IANS | Kolkata May 11, 2018: An ojha (quack doctor) was detained on Thursday in connection with the death of a 63-year old jatra (folk theatre) artiste due to snake bite while she was performing at a religious singing session with the reptile in West Bengal's Hasnabad, police said.

The victim Kalidasi Mondal allegedly did not get medical help for three-four hours after the snake bite, though the incident occurred in an area very near to the village hospital. She was attended to by the quack doctor Dayal Thakur, who tried to revive her.

After the incident, Thakur, who was associated with the singing troupe, fled.

"The quack treated Kalidasi after the snakebite and she died before reaching the hospital. That is why the relatives of the deceased have filed a police complaint," Debdulal Mondal, officer-in-charge, Hasnabad police station, told IANS over phone.

Hasnabad is located close to the Indo-Bangladesh border in North 24 Parganas district.

The hospital declared her brought dead.

According to sources, the relatives of the deceased feel that someone, jealous of Kalidasi's fame, had replaced the non-poisonous performing snakes with a venomous one.

"In the initial stage of the investigation, nothing of this sort has been found. Apparently, the quack had no motive as he too had a long association with the troupe," said Mondal.

Kalidasi was associated with the Jatra troupe for almost twenty years. She had earned a lot of fame in the adjoining villages as well for her performances with live snakes.

She had also opened her own 'Paala Gaan' singing troupe.