India: Devotees brawl with fire to appease goddess Durga during Agni Keli

Posted April 21, 2017 5:13 am by Comments

By Ruptly

Hundreds of Hindu devotees gathered to celebrate Agni Keli, also known as the ‘fire fight’ in Kateel, Mangalore District, on Thursday, by throwing burning palm fronds at one another in order to appease Hindu goddess Durga.

The annual eight-day celebration takes place every April. Devotees split into two groups and face off from a distance of around 10 to 15 metres (33 to 50 feet). The fiery action attracts thousands of spectators, who watch as the torch-wielding men try to set each other ablaze.

SOT, Devotee (Hindi): “We fast for one month to participate in this ritual. During the fasting period we don’t eat any non-vegetarian food like chicken, fish or mutton. We are participating in this ritual without any fear; nothing happens to us due to our extreme prayers and poojas.”

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