Mumbai is currently in the grips of fear after vampires have been sighted lurking in the shadows by multiple witnesses. Police are actively searching for what appears to be a vampire, and undertaking an unconventional approach to quash the rumors which are spreading like wildfire.
Police assembled commissioner Qaisar Khalid to respond to the situation, and soon men were following up on the sightings and visiting homes where the creature had allegedly been sighted. Their mission? Tell residents there is nothing to the claim and no vampires have been sighted in the area. They explain that they are attempting to stifle mass panic just as much as an actual attempt to stop an ongoing raid of bandits in the area who enter colonies to rob and murder people. Many have been told to stay off the streets after dark. Others have followed suit without warning.
Mumbai is no stranger to the paranormal. Being the tourism and entertainment capital of India, Mumbai has legends surrounding a number of hotels and film studios which are credited with being particularly haunted. And in addition to vampires, there have been legends of supernatural being roaming the area since long before it became a tourist destination. But authorities believe this latest string of sightings are the result of gang activity, not monsters or spirits. And as evidence of gang violence increases, police are finding it increasingly difficult to tie in the many sightings of supernatural creatures reported alongside it. Parents are refusing to send their children to school, and they are increasingly leaving the streets bare as the sun sets. Police are meanwhile additionally increasing their patrols.
India has a long history of supernatural creatures, including a few that would appear to Western culture to fit the vampire mythos fairly well. The vetalas were said to be an undead being that flew into the mouths of corpses and inhabit their bodies, animating them like a puppet-master would with phantasmal strings. The vetalas were popularized by Baital Pacisi who spoke of them in the Kathasaritsagara where King Vikramaditya would leave his palatial home to hunt an ancient blood letter that terrorized his kingdom. Even shards of pottery unearthed from ancient Persia hold motifs of strange beings that drink the blood of men.
Whether it’s a gang capitalizing on the fears of a community or something a bit more sinister, the stories of vampires roaming the countryside throughout Mumbai have parents and residents worried and police on the lookout for an explanation. Sightings of supernatural entities are not uncommon throughout the world, but most of those are simple sightings that result in someone seeing an entity and then being left alone. The grisly details of these vampire-like monsters are one of the most chilling stories in the long history of legends in the area. Of course it’s little wonder why authorities and the public are so conflicted about the reports.