Youth sacrifices self to please goddess

Last Updated 12 July 2010, 17:15 IST

Thousands of devotees at the famous Lalita Devi temple at Neemsar, one of the “shaktipeeths,” in Uttar Pradesh’s Sitapur district, were shocked on Sunday when a 24-year-old science student sacrificed himself by slitting his throat before the deity.
The youth—identified as Narendra Pal, a resident of Maholi area in the same district, and a second year BSc Agriculture Science student—left a written note saying that he was sacrificing his life to please the goddess.

“Suddenly while chanting the mantras, Narendra took out a knife and slit his throat. He fell down before the deity in his pool of blood,” said Shiv Shankar, a priest at the temple.
Since it was “amavasya,”  lakhs of devotees had thronged the temple to take a holy dip in the nearby sacred “sarovar” (pond).

The temple gates were closed and panic gripped the devotees, police officials said. Narendra was rushed to district hospital but he died on the way.
Narendra’s father Srikrishna, too, regarded it as a “sacrifice.”

“Narendra was a deeply religious person. He used to worship for hours together and always talked about religion. My  son always visited Neemsar on auspicious days like ‘navratras’ and ‘amavasyas,’ ” Srikrishna said,

Neemsar, also known as Naimisharanya, is an important Hindu pilgrimage site. According to Hindu traditions, the Vedas were divided into four parts and “puranas” were written by rishi Ved Vyas at Naimisharanya.

Hindu saints, however, sharply criticised the act saying that it was highly improper. “It is sheer madness,” quipped the mahant of the famous Hanumangarhi temple in Ayodhya.

(Published 12 July 2010, 17:15 IST)

Follow us on