Animal sacrifice banned in Nepal festival

New Delhi, July 28 (IANS) In a move that will spare the lives of millions of animal’s, animal sacrifice has been banned indefinitely at Nepal’s Gadhimai festival, a rights group said on Tuesday.

The Gadhimai festival in Bara district, about 160 km from Kathmandu, witnesses the world’s biggest animal sacrifice event held every five years — for the last 300 years.

The decision announced by the Nepal temple trust follows rigorous negotiations and campaigning by Animal Welfare Network Nepal and Humane Society International of India (HSI), the latter said in a statement.

Gauri Maulekhi of HSI said: “This is a tremendous victory for compassion that will save the lives of countless animals… We commend the temple committee but acknowledge that a huge task lies ahead of us in educating the public so that they are fully aware.”

HSI said it will spend the next three-and-a-half years till the next Gadhimai, educating devotees in Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal on the temple trusts’ decision not to sacrifice animals.

“Animal sacrifice is a highly regressive practice and no nation in the modern world should entertain it,” Maulekhi said in a statement.

Activists had petitioned India’s Supreme Court against the movement of animals from India to the Gadhimai festival.

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court issued directions to states to set up mechanisms to prevent animals from being taken to Gadhimai in future and create awareness against animal sacrifice.

Gadhimai Temple Trust chairman Ram Chandra Shah said: “For generations, pilgrims have sacrificed animals to goddess Gadhimai, in the hope of a better life.

“For every life taken, our heart is heavy. The time has come to transform an old tradition. The time has come to replace killing and violence with peaceful worship and celebration.”

According to HSI, it is estimated that more than 500,000 buffaloes, goats, chicken and other animals were decapitated at Gadhimai in 2009. In 2014 the numbers had reduced by 70 percent.

Leave a Reply

Please enter your comment!

The opinions, views, and thoughts expressed by the readers and those providing comments are theirs alone and do not reflect the opinions of or any employee thereof. is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the readers. Responsibility for the content of comments belongs to the commenter alone.  

We request the readers to refrain from posting defamatory, inflammatory comments and not indulge in personal attacks. However, it is obligatory on the part of to provide the IP address and other details of senders of such comments to the concerned authorities upon their request.

Hence we request all our readers to help us to delete comments that do not follow these guidelines by informing us at Lets work together to keep the comments clean and worthful, thereby make a difference in the community.

Please enter your name here