Villagers celebrate unique cow dung splashing ritual

The ritual held at Gumtapuram village in Talavadi Hills is celebrated for over three centuries

Gumtapuram village in Talavadi Hills performed a unique ritual here on Tuesday in which men of all ages splashed cow dung over each other.

The ritual is celebrated on the third day after Deepavali as people believed that their ancestors noticed blood oozing from a ‘lingam’ that was concealed inside a heap of cow dung. Hence, they celebrate the festival that is celebrated for over three centuries. The village is located at the Tamil Nadu – Karnataka border and draws huge crowds from the neighbouring State every year. But due to COVID-19, the police and revenue officials allowed the festival to be conducted with only 100 participants.

Cow dung collected from the village and nearby areas was dumped at two places at the rear side of the Beereshwara Swamy temple. Boys performed special puja at the temple and later entered the temple tank and took bath. Later, a donkey was taken out in a procession from the tank to the temple and puja was performed at the spots where cow dung piled up.

Finally, celebrations began with men of all ages splashing cow dung balls at each other. After an hour, all the participants took bath in the tank and offered prayers at the temple after which the festival came to an end. Villagers also believed that the used cow dung when sprayed in their land would increase the productivity.

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