Election time forces political leaders to do whatever is required to woo voters. It was exactly the same with Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as the party’s election committee head and former chief minister Bhagat Singh Koshyari offered ‘ghughutia' (sweets made of wheat and
BJP leader Bhagat Singh Koshyari with ghughutia garland in Bageshwar. HT
jaggery) to crows on the occasion of ‘kale kawwa’, a popular ritual held on Makar Sankranti in entire Kumaon region.
While offering ghughutia to crows, Koshyari prayed for the party’s victory in the coming polls.
This all happened during Makar Sankranti fair, a historical fair held annually at Bageshwar, on the bank of Saryu river. Every year political
leaders come to Bageshwar during the fair and participate in various programmes.
Apart from the BJP, the Congress, UKD (P), BSP and leaders from some other outfits also came to fair and offered ghughutia to crows. It is believed ancestors come in the form of crows and shower blessings.
Though the ritual is typically meant for kids, as they sport garland made of ghughutia and oranges and offer sweets to the crows while shouting ‘kale kawwa ale ghughutia mala kha le’ (black crow please come and accept ghughutia).