Pumpkins, cucumbers replace animal sacrifice in Puja

Sacrifice in Durga Puja

Priest of a Barowari Puja Committee said, “Sacrifice is an essential aspect of the Puja, for `bali’ is the symbol of power. Bali invokes power. And since we are worshipping Durga, who is the embodiment of shakti (power), it is essential to incorporate bali in puja, but it does not have to be an animal.”

“Earlier, people here preferred animal sacrifice because of certain socio-economic reason, but now most of the Puja committees prefer to use vegetables or fruits,” added the purohit.

Incidentally, even Bengali pandals do not offer animal sacrifice to the goddess. Porf A K Mukherjee, an old-timer of the city said, “It is indeed exemplary that Puja is organized in Bengali pandals without any animal sacrifice. We offer symbolic sacrifices like that of gourd, white pumpkin, sugarcane, cucumber etc.”

Source: The Times of India.

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