Kerala government bars temple from asking devotees to give blood to bathe goddess

Representative image. Photograph:( AFP )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Mar 10, 2018, 03.32 AM (IST)

After Deviyode Sri Vidwari Vaidyanatha Temple in Kerala issued a public notice urging the devotees to “give blood” to bathe goddess Kali, the state government censured the temple authorities and directed them to drop the idea. 

Minister Kadakampalli Surendran said that the practice is a disgrace to Kerala. However, the head priest of the temple said that the government was trying to portray the ritual in a ''bad light''.

The minister added that irrespective of politics, religion, and caste, the people of Kerala should come together to oppose such ''primitive rituals''.

Meanwhile, the head priest suggested that the ancient ritual would help cure diseases. He added that the government has a wrong idea about the details of the ritual. 

"Devotees were requested to collect their blood for the ‘yagna’. The ‘yagna’ fire is holy and when we add a drop of blood to it, it absorbs energy. That’s the reason why Hindu devotees have a number of blood-related rituals,” media reports quoted him as saying.  

The ritual was supposed to be held at the temple for 10 days from March 12 as part of the annual Kaliyoottu festival. The devotees were expected to donate their blood using disposable syringes.