Three men arrested over suspected human sacrifice in Birbhum, India Three men arrested over suspected human sacrifice in Birbhum, India | News.com.au POLICE in eastern India say they've arrested three men in a suspected case of human sacrifice, including two former colleagues of the victim, who was found beheaded in a temple. The naked, decapitated body of the man, a factory worker, was found last Wednesday in a temple in the Birbhum district of eastern West Bengal, about 200km from state capital Kolkata. "Three men - all in their late 30s - have been arrested over a week in connection with the beheading," Birbhum district police chief Rabindranath Mukherjee said. He said two of the arrested men were employed in a factory where the victim had once worked and the third was a local labourer. "We cannot say at this stage if it was a human sacrifice or not," he added. The dismembered body was found near the holiest part of the temple, which was dedicated to the Hindu goddess of power, Kali, and the head was smeared with red vermilion and surrounded by flowers and incense sticks. A local priest Utpal Bhattacharya said he believed it had been a religious sacrifice. "We heard that incidents of human sacrifice by tantriks (black magic practitioners) in different temples of the goddess Kali in Birbhum were common over a century ago," he said. The district of Birbhum is considered a centre of energy and power in Hindu mythology, he said. Human sacrifice cases occasionally make headlines in deeply religious and superstitious India, particularly in poor rural areas where some people turn to practitioners of black magic for help. In March, a married couple in rural western India were arrested for allegedly killing five young boys because a mystic told them it would help the woman conceive. And in September last year, police in northern India arrested four people after a nine-year-old boy was kidnapped and killed in another case of suspected human sacrifice.