Probe Ordered Over Minor Girls Being Paraded Naked in Madhya Pradesh to Propitiate Rain Gods
File photo of Indian villagers carrying buckets and containers to collect drinking water from a water tap at a village on the outskirts of Jabalpur in the Madhya Pradesh state on May 18, 2019. (Uma Shankar Mishra/AFP via Getty Images)
DAMOH, Madhya Pradesh – In a shocking incident, minor girls were paraded naked in a village in Madhya Pradesh’s Damoh to propitiate Lord Indra for rain in the area, officials said.
The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights has taken a grim view of the matter and has sought a report from the district administration.
According to the information received so far, the incident was reported from Baniya village in Jabera block of the district. In the Bundelkhand region, in which Damoh falls, people have faith in various “traditions” to urge Lord Indra for rain. One of this is getting minor girls to pray to a local goddess in a naked state, as this is believed to please him, and make it rain.
As part of this “tradition,” six minor girls bathing in the lake near the village were brought to the temple of goddess Khermai, made to spread cowdung there, and then they were stripped and paraded.
A video of the incident went viral on social media, bringing it to the attention of the district administration.
Superintendent of Police D.R. Tenivar told IANS that the girls, aged 5-6, were called to the temple for spreading cowdung and then they were paraded with singing women accompanying them.
He said that only women were present on the occasion and men were not there. The matter is being probed.
Questioned on the issue, Damoh Collector S. Krishna Chaitanya said that the local administration would probe the matter and send a report to the NCPCR.