Husband and wife decapitate themselves using home-made guillotine

A husband and wife have “severed their own heads” as part of a ritual sacrifice in India, leaving a note behind asking for their nearby relatives to look after their two children. Hemubhai Makwana, 38, and his wife Hansaben, 35, used a “guillotine-like mechanism” to cut off their own heads together, according to local police, after a year of engaging in daily prayers.

The incident took place between Saturday night and Sunday afternoon in Gujarat, western India. 

The regional Rajkot district police announced the deaths of the couple on Sunday. 

The pair “prepared a fire altar” over which they cut off their own heads, the police said, before they “rolled into the fire”. 

“The couple first prepared a fire altar before putting their heads under a guillotine-like mechanism held by a rope,” sub-inspector Indrajeetsinh Jadeja of Vinchhiya police station said.

“As soon as they released the rope, an iron blade fell on them, severing their heads, which rolled into the fire.”

They performed the ritual sacrifice in a hut at their farm in Vinchhiya village, which is about an hour and a half’s drive southwest of the city of Gujarat. 

Police added that the couple left behind a note addressed to their nearby relatives instructing them to look after their children. 

The bodies have been sent for a post-mortem examination, and a case of accidental death has been registered.

The couple’s family members said the pair had been offering prayers in their home every day since last year.

It is not known how old their children are or what religious principles the couple had been practising. 

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