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Lucknow: Man slits throat for goddess

Last updated on: August 23, 2006 18:56 IST
In a bizarre incident, a 45-year-old man on Wednesday slit his throat to offer himself to a Goddess at an ancient temple at Neemsar, about 50 km from Lucknow in Sitapur district of Uttar Pradesh.

According to Sitapur District Superintendent of Police Dawa Sherpa, "The incident took place around 8.30 am, leaving the victim Natha Ram Pal writhing in pain following which local priests and others at the temple rushed him to a local hospital where he died later."

Sherpa told, "The Lalta Devi temple, where Pal offered himself before the Goddess, has a history of people offering their tongues on Amavasya (new moon) day in the hope that their desires would be fulfilled." He added, "This
has not been heard of in recent times; and in any case, there has been no case of a human sacrifice that anyone can recall at the temple."

Pal, who is survived by four children (the eldest one being 14 years) was described by his family members as an extremely religious person, who would spent most of his time at temples in his village, about 12 km from the scene of the incident.

Since he was a frequent devotee at the Lalta Devi temple, no one suspected what he was up to when he headed for the place on Wednesday morning, which was Amavasya.

"We were all shocked when we saw him picking up a knife and slitting his throat in full view of everyone in the temple courtyard", a temple priest told the police.

A suicide case has been registered by the police.

Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow