Time for all animal lovers and animal rights activists across the globe to rejoice!
Animal sacrifice during the bloody festival of Gadhimai in Nepal took a halt, this Tuesday as the Nepal temple trust declared all future animal sacrifices to be cancelled during the world’s biggest animal sacrifice event that is carried out for 5 days.
The trust has advised all the devotees to not to bring animals to the festival.
“The Gadhimai Temple Trust hereby declares our formal decision to end animal sacrifice. With your help, we can ensure Gadhimai 2019 is free from bloodshed. Moreover, we can ensure Gadhimai 2019 is a momentous celebration of life”, said the chairman of the Trust Ram Chandra Shah according to a Times of India report.
The success did not come easily. Nepal Gadhimai temple trust declared this decision after numerous negotiations and campaigning done by Animal Welfare Network Nepal (AWNN) and Humane Society International/India.
Here’s the statement made by the chairman of the Trust, Ram Chandra Shah:
For generations, pilgrims have sacrificed animals to the 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.
Our concern has been this: how do we convince the people, so desperate for the favour of Gadhimai, that there is another way? How do we bring them on our journey? Thankfully, the dedicated efforts of the Animal Welfare Network Nepal and Humane Society International/India has shown us the path and provided the motivation to make this transformation a reality.
More than 500,000 buffalo, goats, chickens and other household animals were sacrificed during the ritual at Gadhimai in 2009, the number duly decreased in 2014 but a large number of devotees still believed in the sacrifice.
HSI/India consultant & Trustee, Gauri Maulekhi, who sent a petition to the Indian Supreme Court against the movement of animals from India to Nepal for the Gadhimai festival says,
“This is a tremendous victory for compassion that will save the lives of countless animals. The HSI/India was heartbroken to witness the bloodshed at Gadhimai, and we have worked hard to help secure this ban on future sacrifice.”
To please the goddess of power, Gadhimai is the motive behind sacrificing a large number of animals during the 5 days of the festival.
The founding member of AWNN and campaigner against the Gadhimai festival, Manoj Gautam says,
“We applaud the temple committee’s decision to end this mass slaughter of innocent animals and hope that they will continue to support us in our future endeavours for protecting animals in the country. The AWNN’s progressive move to work directly with the temple committee, with Humane Society International/India’s support has been the key that changed the whole face of the campaign and is the reason for the achievement we have now.”
The next clean and ‘animal killing proof’ Gadhimai festival will be held in the year 2019.
News courtesy Times Of India