18 December 2017
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas




  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia


  • » 09/22/2017, 17.10

    NEPAL

    As Dashain starts, mass slaughter of animals sparks protest by Buddhists and animal rights activists

    Christopher Sharma

    The 15-day event is the most important religious celebration in Nepal. Animal rights activists have gone to Hindu temples to raise awareness among believers. The stench of rotting dead animals fills the areas near the places of worship. Police have been deployed to prevent confrontation.

    Kathmandu (AsiaNews) – The Hindu festival of Dashain began in Nepal yesterday along with protests by Buddhists and animal rights activists who oppose the event’s traditional mass slaughter of animals.

    According to some estimates, a million goats, sheep, buffalo and birds will be killed during the 15-day celebration. Their fresh blood will be offered to the gods and poured onto temple steps. But for Buddhists, who are usually opposed to all forms of violence, the killing of so many animals is sacrilege.

    "We respect the culture of others, but the slaughter of thousands of innocent animals and birds is not a good practice,” monk Tsering Dorje of Kathmandu told AsiaNews. “We oppose such killing and ask Hindus to respect nonviolence."

    Dashain is the most important and longest festival in Nepal. For this occasion, Nepalis around the world try to travel home to be with family.

    The celebration marks the victory of good over evil and the birth of the goddess Durga, created to defeat the Mahishasura demon and stop his reign of terror in the divine and human world.

    The first nine days of Dashain symbolise the battle between the two. This is why on the eighth and ninth day fresh animal blood is sacrificed, a gift to the goddess engaged in the final stages of the confrontation.

    The monk said that hundreds of animal- and peace-loving Buddhists are flocking to various Hindu temples to convince Hindus not to slaughter animals. "We are carrying out a nationwide awareness campaign," he added.

    "It's not just about killing animals,” said Sunita Bhandari, of Maitidevi Temple in the capital. “Young people are being taught to become violent. Hindu temples are also overcrowded, so those who live nearby have to deal with the dead animals."

    Children are afraid to come to places of worship and the nauseating odour of ​​rotting meat causes considerable discomfort.

    "We do not ask the faithful to kill the animals, but to offer coconuts,” said Guru Guvaju Ratindra, priest at the Bhadrakali Temple. “They come with animals and sacrifice them in honour of the gods, in accordance with Hindu tradition. We cannot stop it because Dashain is the time to make the gods happy."

    Fearing possible clashes between the Hindus and animal rights activists, the government has stepped up security around temples.

    "We follow the government's directives and we will enforce law and order,” said Police Officer Hemanta Rawal. “We want Hindus, Buddhists and other believers to respect one another."

    Dashain is "part of our culture and it will take some time before people give up this practice,” said government spokeswoman Mohan Bahadur Basnet. “The government must listen to everyone's opinion." Meanwhile, security forces remain on guard.

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version










    See also

    26/05/2010 CHINA
    China-US dialogue: restrictions on dissidents until June 4
    Lawyers, intellectuals, writers deprived of their liberty for fear that they meet with people or contact media. The presence of international political figures (currently from U.S., soon from the EU) increases pressures, controls, forced removals from Beijing.

    24/10/2017 09:07:00 HONG KONG
    Activists Joshua Wong and Nathan Law released on bail

    Released pending appeal, scheduled for 7 November. Sentenced to months in jail for having demonstrated in 2014. Activists’ protests continue: justice serves Beijing.



    21/01/2010 UZBEKISTAN
    Torture in Uzbekistan: systematic and unpunished
    Pro- rights groups denounced the systematic use of torture by police and officials to extract confessions or to "punish" opponents. Their complaints go unheard and the judiciary is not independent from the executive.

    01/07/2006 BANGLADESH
    Special squad and police kill 160 in 6 months

    A report by a human rights centre documents the killings, which were described by the media as deaths occurring in "crossfire" or in "encounters" with security forces. But in reality they were executions.



    25/08/2006 CHINA
    Shandong: blind activist condemned to four years in prison

    Chen Guangcheng, who denounced forced abortions in his home province, was found guilty of damaging a car and blocking traffic. Yesterday, sentence was also handed down to Zhao Yan, accused of revealing state secrets abroad: three years for "fraud".





    Editor's choices

    IRAQ
    For parish priest in Amadiya, Advent among Mosul refugees sees solidarity stronger than hardships (photos)



    Fr Samir describes an atmosphere of joy and hope, despite the lack of resources and less aid. The struggle for survival has boosted the bond between Christians, Muslims, and Yazidis. About 150 refugee families are still living at the centre, 70 per cent depending on resources provided by the Church. Hundreds of young people attend the prayer meeting in preparation for Christmas.


    VATICAN-ASIA
    Xenophobia and populism. The case of Asia

    Bernardo Cervellera

    Theme studied during symposium jointly organized by the World Council of Churches (WCC) and by the Vatican Dicastery for Integral Human Development. Tracing the commitment of Churches amid rising hostility towards others, considered as enemies and foreigners. "Migrants" are an important political theme in Germany and in UK Brexit. Testimonies from Latin America and Africa. Asian experiences entrusted to the director of AsiaNews.


    AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!

    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.
     

    SUBSCRIBE NOW

    News feed

    Canale RSScanale RSS 

    Add to Google









     

    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®