From CNN World:
...The ritual sacrifice of goats, buffaloes and roosters in temples and at home is widespread in Nepal where 80 percent of the population are Hindu.
Some five million people from adjoining districts---and also from the bordering Indian states of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh---will attend the festival, according to local authorities, although only two days are dedicated to the sacrificial ritual itself.
The slaughter follows a set pattern: on Friday male water buffalo calves are killed while on Saturday attention switches to goats.
Officials estimate that up to 10,000 buffalo calves and 150,000 goats will be offered to Gadhimai---the goddess of power---during the ritual. Watch a CNNi report on the ritual
But these numbers will be much lower than those of 2009, the last time the five-yearly Gadhimai festival took place, thanks to advocacy efforts by animal rights activists. In that year nearly 20,000 buffalo calves were killed, according to temple officials and more than 200,000 goats were slaughtered.
"We object to the cruelty with which animals are treated," says Pramada Shah of Animal Welfare Network Nepal. "There is random hacking of animals in open space. Not all animals have their heads chopped off. Some take up to 40 minutes to die."
The participants---who hack the animals in an enclosed arena with large knives---are licensed by the Gadhimai Festival Management and Development Committee. This year about 400 people will kill animals, according to Kushwaha, who is also the committee's secretary....
Rob's comment: Well, at least they aren't hacking people to death like the Islamic fanatics. And maybe the butchers get points from feminists for sacrificing male animals to that female god.
Labels: Atheism and Religion