The entire Bhatia family, ages between 15 and 77, were found dead at their family home after a seven day celebration that ended in tragedy. Apparently, the family were devoutly religious and believed that they would survive a shockingly dangerous 'thanksgiving ritual' that apparently had an eleven year history with the brood. The head of their family, Bophal Singh, had died in 2007 and the family had been trying to get in spiritual contact with him since then, their journey had been logged in notes and manuals that they left behind and were pored over by curious investigators. The entire family, made up of eleven people and three generations, were found hanging on Sunday at their home in Delhi, India. Its thought they believed they would survive the experience.
CCTV footage has been unearthed showing the victims, Savita and Nidhi, carrying stools into their home. Narayan Devi, aged 77, her two sons Bhavnesh, 50, and Lalit, 45, their wives Savita, 48, and Tina, 42, a daughter Pratibha, 57, and five grandchildren, Priyanka, 33, Neetu, 25, Monu, 23, and 15-year-olds Dhruv and Shivam, were all found dead at the family home. Autopsy reports since have revealed Narayan, Bhavnesh and Pratibha died of ‘partial hanging’. The police said: "The family was confident that they would survive the ceremony, which prescribed a ritualistic hanging, and had even planned to repeat the ritual with a relative who was facing problems."
A Delhi Police spokesman said: "The first six days, according to the notes, involved rehearsals in which they would bind their limbs, blindfold themselves and tie the noose around their necks. CCTV footage confirms the stools and cables were brought in on the last day. On the seventh day, they were meant to hang themselves, but survive. The hanging, they believed, would help them meet the supernatural power, in this case, the dead patriarch." Indian policemen carry the body of a victim into a hearse van after 11 family members died.