The Kalahandi District Police on Wednesday said it arrested four people for allegedly chopping off the hands of two migrant labourers four days ago.

The four arrested include a labour contractor, who is the main accused.

The crime came to light after Nilambara Dhangda Majhi and Pialu Dhangada Majhi, reached the government hospital at Bhawanipatna in Kalahandi district in a serious condition on Sunday night.

The two were among the 12 labourers the accused had hired from different villages of Kalahandi about a fortnight ago, paying each Rs. 14,000 for work in a brick kiln in Andhra Pradesh. But instead of Andhra Pradesh, the contractors forcibly took them to Raipur in Chhattisgarh for work at a brick kiln. The labourers however, refused and ten of the 12 managed to escape.

Infuriated at this, the contractor and his accomplice allegedly tried to take Nilambara and Pialu back to Kalahandi to recover the money they were paid in advance. At a jungle near Belpada, the accused, in an inebriated state, chopped off the right hand of the two.

The State government said it will bear the duo’s medical expenses.