Our initiative campaign – Bloodless Gadhimai
The Gadhimai festival is a sacrificial ceremony held every five years at the Gadhimai Temple in Bariyarpur, in Bara District, about 200 kilometers south of Kathmandu and 7 kilometers east of the district’s headquarters in Kalaiya. This location is in southern Nepal, close to the Indo-Nepal border, next to Bihar (Indian state). It is primarily celebrated by the people of Nepal and India.
This Mela(festival) is celebrated every 5 years and is a massive massacre of buffaloes, goats, sheep and other animals in masses. People sacrifice thousands and thousands of innocent animals in the name of religion. Every year, different organizations around the world have been protesting against the banning of this Mela. Since 2017, FAWN(Federation of Animal Welfare Nepal) have been conducting campaigns against this Mela. As a result, in 2019, we were able to reduce the number of sacrifices of buffaloes from 20000 to 5500 in the last Gadhimai. Not only this, pigeons were also sacrificed in masses but due to our protest, they banned the sacrifice of pigeons and also formed a Conservation Trust for their protection. The local government is taking the responsibility for their conservation now.
People from different places, estimated around 5 lakh will be present for this Mela, sacrificing those innocent animals for fulfilling their wishes. It is quite difficult to change the superstitious beliefs of people but it is definitely not impossible.
The aim behind the campaign for the upcoming Gadhimai Mela 2024 is to make zero sacrifices.
We believe, religious beliefs and norms can be followed/continued without harming any animals.