Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Baby dipped into boiling water as part of ritual

BIJAPUR: A three-month-old infant was dunked into a vessel full of boiling water and lifted out, in a mysterious religious ritual by a couple at Jumalapur village in Bijapur district.

The horrifying act drew shocked gasps from the public and media persons gathered, but not as much as a whimper from the baby. She appeared fine.

The parents looked unafraid, and in fact, were happy that they were carrying out the ritual, held during the festival of Balabhim near Talikot town on Friday.

The story goes like this: Prabhavati and Sanganagouda of Navadagi village near Talikot town married a few years ago, but had no children. Fed up, the disappointed couple prayed that their wish be fulfilled.

Hanumantray Hugar, priest of Balabhim (Anjaneya) temple of Jumalapur village had uttered to them, presumably speaking on behalf of the Almighty: "I will give two issues to you, out of which one will be taken by self. Another should be dipped in boiling water as a religious ritual".

In due course, the first baby was born, but died early. The second one was born within a year, and the ritual was performed. Whether this is blind belief or a challenge to science is not known. But the baby is safe and healthy, even after its appalling experience.


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