Known as one of the three places where animal sacrifices are still taking place in Nepal, Manakamana at 1302 meters above sea level on the road from Kathmandu to Pokhara is a holy city. His temple is dedicated to the Hindu goddess Bagwati, an incarnation of Parvati that is supposed to fulfill the wishes of the pilgrims. Built in the heart of this small perched village that is Manakamana the temple welcomes many faithful. Hindus from India and Nepal share the hotels of the city, quickly crowded on weekends and festival days.
The official religion in India having reproved the sacrificial practice of animals to replace it by that of plants is therefore in Nepal that some Indians come to honor this tradition and thus hope to see their wishes fulfilled. We see young couples come here hoping to get a male heir, families come to wish their children's academic success or simply for future financial success.
In the morning, hundreds of people queue up, full of offerings, with a chicken, a goat or simple flowers. Pilgrims patiently wait for their tricks to pass before the deity, bless their offerings and then offer them. They then shake the sensible bells called the goddess. These resonate so all day in the city. After the passage to the temple, the animals are recovered and taken to the back of the temple where in an enclosed courtyard, more or less out of sight, they are sacrificed. The executioners must, for a better omen, slice the heads of the animals. A small altar dedicated to Bagwati adorns the courtyard bathed in the blood of animals offered to him. Most meat is used by restaurants in the city. Sadhous are there to assure the favors of the gods and apply the Tika on the front of the pilgrims.
This ancestral practice is regularly attacked by the defenders of the animal cause. Every year, Brigitte Bardot intervened to denounce these sacrifices, especially during the feast of Gadhimai where thousands of oxen were sacrificed; In 2015, the Nepalese government banned these bloody mass rituals.