Daayan or Daayani (
The daayan cult refers to a secret society which emerged during the 15th century in
In Harangul it is believed that daayan lives in an area of the village, and an evil spirit resides within them. Villagers believe these women destroy everything good. Daayans are reported in and around cemeteries, abandoned battlefields, crossroads, toilets and squalid places.
Folklore suggests that a woman treated badly by her family or who died in childbirth as a result of family neglect returns as a daayan, haunting the family and drinking the blood of male family members. Beginning with the youngest male in the family, draining his blood changes him into an old man before she progresses to the other men.
A daayan is also said to target young families, young women and other family surrogates. Assuming the form of a young, attractive female, she hunts for young men on roads and seduces lone travellers into accompanying her. Imprisoning a man, she feeds on his blood or sweat. One legend says that a daayan will hold a young man captive until he is old, using him sexually until he dies and joins the spirit world. Another says that a young man seduced by the daayan who eats her food returns at dawn to the village as an old man.