Children in Ranchi walk on fire to please Lord Shiva during Manda Festival

Ranchi, May 25 : In the name of faith and ritual, small children of four to five years of age walk on fire, in order to please Lord Shiva, a Hindu deity of destruction, during a festival in Ranchi.

In Argora near Ranchi, a Manda festival is organized where small children of four to five years of age were made to walk on fire.

Videshi Yadav, a local priest said that during this festival, the devotees stop the intake of salt for seven days and just have fruits and sweets. He also informed that they have been organizing this festival since 1965 and all the children who walk on fire perform it in the way they are taught.

Hundreds of people were present at the event and many young children were seen walking on the hot embers.

Vedanti Ram, a participant in the ritual, shared his experience and said,
"Every year, Manda festival is celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm. More than 400 devotees come here to pray. It is celebrated with a lot of pomp and show."

The tribal people believe that worshipping Lord Shiva would reduce their hardships.

Shweta, an observer at the festival said that she enjoys watching the devotees walk on fire.

Local landlords organise this festival every year, which lasts for 15 days.

--ANI (Posted on 26-05-2013)

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