India has many villages and each village follows rituals, customs and traditions that are not known to a lot of people. It is interesting to know that despite us being in the 21st century, certain age-old traditions still persist. Let’s refresh our knowledge with a few facts of our country and know some bizarre customs.
8. Malana i.e. silence of the lambs
Malana is an ancient village in Himachal Pradesh, where the inhabitants are referred to as Malanis. Reportedly, non-Malanis are considered inferior by the Malanis. On visiting Malana, non-Malanis are supposed to follow a set path and are not allowed to touch anything, be it the walls, houses or people. If they do, they have to pay a sum which also covers the sacrifice of a lamb, in order to purify the impurity caused by their touch.
7. Palamedu i.e. a bullheaded task
This town is situated in the Madurai district of Tamil Nadu. It is famous for Jallikattu, which is held every year in January. It is a sport where the residents participate in a bull-fight. It is held from January to July, with its start in the Palamedu town. For people of this town and those who organize this event, it is more of a ritual that has been followed since ancient times. It has socio-cultural significance for its people and is very dear not only to the participants but also to the bull owners.
6. Saur i.e. two negatives make a positive
Saur village of Uttarakhand is famous for its worship of Duryodhana. Such is their faith that there is a temple to his name there. Considered to be a negative persona, it is delightful to know that he too is praised and looked up to. Apart from Duryodhana, there is a temple of Karna, another pivotal character of Mahabharata, at Deorah, Uttaranchal.
5. Deshnoke i.e. beauty is in the eye of the beholder
Deshnoke is a small town in Rajasthan’s Bikaner district where the famous Karni Mata Temple is situated. The people of Deshnoke, including the royal family, believe in worshiping the who reside at the temple. According to their belief, getting leftovers of the rats is considered to be a high honor. Also, if a rat is killed, it is replaced with a gold or silver rat.
4. Mattur i.e. where time stands so still, you can hear it
Situated on the banks of Tunga river of Karnataka, Mattur is a village famous for being the ‘Sanskrit village’. The inhabitants of this village converse in Sanskrit in their day-to-day life and not only during poojas. For people like us, who thought that Sanskrit was taught only in schools, Mattur is a liveing example that it is not history but present reality.
3. Barsana i.e. a good day to be a woman
This town in Mathura district is popular for celebrating Lath Maar Holi which is celebrated a little before the festival of Holi. During this celebration, people hit each other with sticks or laths. In the Radha Rani Temple of Barsana, men or the gops sing provocative songs for the women or the gopis, who in turn chase the men away with laths, leaving the men trying to protect themselves with shields.
2. Shetpal i.e. aasteen ka saanp
Based in the Sholapur district of Maharashtra, the people of village Shetpal have a special resting place for cobras in their houses. Surprisingly, there has never been a causality reported of a villager being bitten by the cobras.
1. Nagrala i.e. it’s raining babies
The Nagrala village is situated in Karnataka. The people of Nagrala follow a ritual which is not only frightening but heart-wrenching. It involves the throwing of babies from the top of the Digambeshwara Temple, about 30 ft high, into blankets held by the crowd. They believe that this act brings luck, prosperity and good health in the lives of the little kids.