Cannibalism is not everyone's cup of tea, but is it better if you wish to cook the human in question?
A man in Uttar Pradesh's Bijnor was recently arrested for attempting to cook human flesh. According to a News18 report, he had asked his wife to prepare the rather horrifying dish, but she had fainted upon seeking the chopped had that he wanted cooked.
The woman woke up to see her husband, who is an alcoholic, prepping to cook the flesh himself. According to reports, the man, identified as Sanjay, had brought the hand in question from a cremation ground near the bank of the Ganga. The incident took place in Tikkopur village on Monday.
According to an IANS report, Sanjay's wife was horrified after seeing a human hand and fingers in the pan. She ran out of the house, alerted the neighbours and called the police.
She also locked her husband in the house even as she fled to get reinforcements. The woman has since refused to return home.
According to the police, the man had also attacked his father recently. He is believed to be mentally unsound. He has been detained.
Now, to be fair there is not specific law against cannibalism in India. But eating human flesh would in turn involve harming a human being, which is most definitely illegal. In case of Sanjay, even if he had not harmed anyone to get the hand that he wanted to cook, well, he did desecrate a corpse, or remove it from the cremation site.
This is not the only case of cannibalism, attempted or otherwise recorded in India. Varanasi's Aghori monks for example have been thought to have cannibalistic tendencies, and reportedly each the flesh of the deceased.
In a 2015 incident, a man was arrested for filching parts of corpses from pyres at a cremation ground to snack on later.
While the police have considered insanity to be a reason behind incidents such as these, there may be a far simpler reason. In 2019, BJP leader Gopal Bhargav created quite a stir after stating that children who become habituated to consuming non-vegetarian food may become cannibals later in life.
To give a bit of context, he was criticising the Kamal Nath-led Madhya Pradesh government.
According to him, India's 'sanatan culture' did not allow the consumption of non-vegetarian food. Under the Congress government, he said, vegetarians were being forced to eat eggs. It was only a matter of time, he opined, until they would be "forced to each chicken and then then meat".
(With inputs from agencies)