Devotees look for divine intervention in Animal sacrifice | chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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Devotees look for divine intervention in Animal sacrifice

chandigarh Updated: Oct 07, 2014 20:46 IST
Gaurav Bisht
Gaurav Bisht
Hindustan Times
SHIMLA

Even as the Supreme Court will hear on Wednesday a special leave petition (SLP) challenging the ban imposed by the Himachal Pradesh high court on animal sacrifice at religious places in the state, the devotees are looking towards deities for divine intervention.

Erstwhile ruler of Kullu Maheshwar Singh, who is the chief guardian of Lord Raghunath, and the Devi Devta Kardar Sangh (organisation of representatives of deities) had moved the apex court after the Himachal Pradesh high court rejected a plea to review the ban on animal sacrifice at religious places across the state.

Before the special leave petition comes up for hearing on Wednesday, the devotees of various deities are hopeful that divine intervention will salvage the age-old tradition of animal sacrifice. “We have firm faith in the divine powers of the deities even as the matter is in the court of law,” said Dhot Ram Thakur, president of the Devi Devta Kardar Sangh, Kullu.

“It is Kalyuga. People have not even spared the deities. Idols of deities have been stolen from the temples,” added Thakur who is repsentative of Devi Dashmi Varda.

“We have full faith in the divine power of deities and hope that the verdict of the Supreme Court over ban on animal sacrifice will come in our favour,” said Joginder Acharya, Kardar of Mata Tripura Sundri at Naggar. “Deities have divine power. They themselves will find out a way,” he added.

A division bench of Himachal Pradesh high court comprising justice Rajiv Sharma and justice Sureshwar Thakur in its interim order on Sep 1, had banned the sacrifice of animals in temples. The bench observed that the practice of animal and bird sacrifice is “abhorrent and dastardly”. It had further observed that animals cannot be permitted to be killed in a barbaric manner to "appease" the gods.

On September 26, the High Court had rejected a plea filed by Maheshwar Singh and the Devi Devta Kardar Sangh to review the interim order, banning animal and bird sacrifice at religious places.

On the call given by Maheshwar Singh, the deities had congregated at Naggar village on September 26 and had “univocally called upon the devotees not to give up their tradition”. However, some of the deities later disapproved animal sacrifice.


CM FOR PRESERVING DEITY CULTURE IN HP

Stressing the need for preserving the culture of 'Dev Pratha' (tradition of deities), chief minister Virbhadra Singh said that the government was committed to preserving the rich traditions and rituals of deities in the state.

“Our deities are inseparable part of our life,” said Virbhadra Singh while presiding over a meeting of the Kardar Sangh in Dev Sadan at Kullu on Tuesday.

He said that the government had made an allocation of rs 12.50 crore for religious ceremonies and rituals to be performed in the temples. “We wanted to make it a revolving fund during the previous Congress regime but the same was curtailed by the successive BJP government”, he said.

The chief minister said that under the Tenancy Act, the land of the deities was transferred to tenants and ever since, the service renderers are looking after the work of deities. Some of them became the owners of the land, which was allotted in the name of Devtas, and in few cases the caretakers themselves became the landowners with no one to look after the affairs of the gods and goddesses and perform day-to-day rituals.
He said that now the government has kept a revolving fund of rs 5 crore for giving grants to the temples every year and the repair and renovation of the temples will be met with additional funds apart from the grant, which was to be provided by the department of language, art and culture.

“We should keep the traditional Pahari architecture of the temples alive during their renovation and repair and the funds won't be any constraint for meeting the requirements”, he added.

Kardar Sangh Kullu district president Dhot Ram Thakur and general secretary TC Mahant honoured the chief minister and placed the demands of the Sangh before him.