Bloodbath at Sulia, cops mute

Bolangir: In an open defiance of the government order, the tribal people of Khairaguda and Kamaria in the district today celebrated their annual religious ceremony ‘Sulia Jatra’ by sacrificing large number of animals and birds at two sacrifice spots- Sana Khala and Bada Khala, barely 30 km from the district headquarters.

The district administration had clamped section 144 of IPC at six sensitive places yesterday and deployed three platoons of police force at the sacrifice sites. Three magistrates were present at the sites to monitor the situation. However, all efforts of government to prevent the gory rituals went in vein when the defiant tribals slaughtered animals and birds in large scale as a part of their festival in presence of top administrative and police officials.

According to reports, officials neither convinced the locals nor take any measures to stop such gruesome ritual as they acted mute spectators.

In the morning, the tribal came in a grand procession to Sanakhala with their traditional weapons and offered ceremonial worship before sacrificing animal.

“It is our tradition. The devotees offer their pet animals for sacrifice to appease the god. So, we sacrificed before the god”, a priest said.

A senior police officer said “it was an open violation of Section 144. Those who flouted the government norms will be prosecuted”.

Notably, the tribals had shifted their sacrifice spots last year to avoid police presence, but this year they paid little heed to government orders.

The tribals believe that all their sufferings are only because of divine wrath. They appease the goddess offering blood of the animals and in returns a she protect them from all odds.