By Shruti Sunderraman
No one is a stranger to odd beliefs in India. In parts of Karnataka and Maharashtra, babies were dropped from heights into the arms of the waiting crowd for “luck”. In a village in Madhya Pradesh, cows would be decorated and allowed to walk over the inhabitants of the village, to please their Gods.
It appears, people have gone one step ahead in the Anatapur district of Andhra Pradesh and have ‘Godmen’ walk over women in the hope of “fertilising” them. On the festival of Ekadashi, women apparently struggling with fertility visit the Lakshmi Narasimha Swami temple.
In a video highlighting this practice, these women then lie down on the ground, while the ‘Godman’ walks over then one by one. Our collective jaws also drop in disgust one by one.
All this, while the crowd surrounding them watches, prays and cheers the practice on. The video does not highlight if any of these women have been injured in any way from the trampling. Instead, according to the executive magistrate of Manaksira town in Anantapur, Harilal Nayak, says, “This ritual has been going on for generations. Everybody, including the women, truly believe that this helps with their fertility.”
We’re unsure of how to react to this pronouncement except to ponder all the questions frothing beneath the nausea. To hell with medical diagnosis before lying down on the floor for trample time? If not, bizarre rituals or otherwise, when will the consensus of fertility stop largely falling on women?
Watch the full video here:
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