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India: Extended family found hanging in Delhi house

Eleven members of the same family have been found dead in a house in India’s capital, Delhi – 10 of them hanging from the ceiling, police say.

At least two of the dead were children. A 77-year-old woman was the only one found lying on the floor. Most were blindfolded, gagged and with their hands tied behind the back.

Police say handwritten notes suggested some “mystical practice”.

However, they have not ruled out murder as the motive.

Only a pet dog was found alive in the family house in northern Delhi’s Burari area.

Post-mortem examinations have begun.

BBC correspondents have reported a sense of panic in the area.

The Bhatia family, originally from Rajasthan in north-western India, had lived in Delhi for over 20 years.

They ran two shops on the ground floor of the three-storey building.

Gurcharan Singh, a neighbour, discovered the bodies when he went to buy milk on Sunday morning.

“When I entered the shop, all the doors were open and the bodies of all the people were hanging from the ceiling with their hands tied,” Mr Singh told BBC Hindi.

A police statement said there were “definite spiritual or mystical practices by the family,” Indian broadcaster NDTV reports.  – BBC