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India: Coconuts smashed over 1,000 devotees' heads in Aadi Perukku ritual02:18

India: Coconuts smashed over 1,000 devotees' heads in Aadi Perukku ritual

India, Mettu Mahadanapuram
August 3, 2016 at 09:54 GMT -00:00 · Published

Over 1,000 devotees had coconuts smashed over their heads at the annual Hindu-Tamil festival of Aadi Perukku in Mettu Mahadanapuram, Wednesday. The event, held at the Sri Mahalakshmi Temple, is a celebration of the life-sustaining properties of water, part of a two-day festival which attracts crowds of worshippers from across southern India.

Medical teams were on hand to stitch up head wounds for those who had been injured in the ritual, although devotees often refrained from seeking medical help, preferring to apply turmeric or sacred ash on the open wounds, in an effort not to offend the deities. “The pain is nothing” said one devotee.

The event has attracted condemnation from Tamil Nadu's State Human Rights Commission. However since the practice is not known to have led to fatalities or major injuries the local government and courts permitted the event to go ahead.

India: Coconuts smashed over 1,000 devotees' heads in Aadi Perukku ritual02:18
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Over 1,000 devotees had coconuts smashed over their heads at the annual Hindu-Tamil festival of Aadi Perukku in Mettu Mahadanapuram, Wednesday. The event, held at the Sri Mahalakshmi Temple, is a celebration of the life-sustaining properties of water, part of a two-day festival which attracts crowds of worshippers from across southern India.

Medical teams were on hand to stitch up head wounds for those who had been injured in the ritual, although devotees often refrained from seeking medical help, preferring to apply turmeric or sacred ash on the open wounds, in an effort not to offend the deities. “The pain is nothing” said one devotee.

The event has attracted condemnation from Tamil Nadu's State Human Rights Commission. However since the practice is not known to have led to fatalities or major injuries the local government and courts permitted the event to go ahead.

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