Tribals dare animal mass sacrifice despite HC ban

Bolangir: Khairaguda in Bolangir district which has been drawing media attention for last couple of years for mass animal sacrifice, once again turned a bloody zone on Tuesday with hundreds of animals being slaughtered by the local tribals on the occasion of annual Sulia festival while all attempts of the district administration to check mass sacrifice went in vain.

Till filing of this report, nearly 2-3 thousand animals including birds were butchered at the main sacrificial spot, sources said.

Locals in groups with sounding drums and musical instruments thronged all the three sacrificial spots this morning and completed all preliminary rituals before slaughtering male goats, buffalos and cocks to appease their revered God Sulia.

According to the tribal tradition, the animal sacrifice is associated with their religious faith which they have been performing for last 500 years.

On Monday in a bid to deter the tribals from performing the gory ritual, the district administration had clamped Sec 144 of CrPc at three sacrificial spots; Sana khala, Bada Khala and main shrine of Sulia God, on the direction of High Court while the obstinate tribals were in no mood to obey the government guidelines. But  mass sacrifices were performed at the places amid tight security and in the presence of top police officials.

Administrative officials had earlier persuaded the locals in a meeting not to violate prohibitory orders of High Court which fell little impact on the local residents. They continued animal sacrifice citing it as a respect to their age old tradition.

On the other hand, the Sulia Sanskar Samiti, the anti-animal sacrifice group which used to take out awareness campaigns in schools and villages to educate the people against the cruel act has done little this year, sources added.

Tradition has it that they appease their presiding deity, Sulia, with the blood of animals for peace and prosperity.