- 16 May 2022
It is said that rain nourishes the shrine with divinity and piousness. But this time, it was different. When the cyclone Amphan was leaving everything devastated in its path of destruction, something dark and evil happened along the narrow alleys of Tarakeshwar which would put even humanity to shame.
Tarakeshwar is a famous Shiva temple in Hooghly district, West Bengal. The city, the municipality and the railway station got their name due to this famous Shiva shrine which gets crowded each year during Shivaratri and the month of Shravan when local Bengali devotees as well as immigrant non-Bengali devotees alike visit the temple to get blessings from Mahadev.
Thousands of Kawarias, walk for multiple nights to travel long distance in bare feet to visit the shrine and pour water, milk and ghee on Mahadev. The sanctity and the piousness of the shrine reach a new height of divine scenery during the rainy month of Shravan.
It is said that rain nourishes the shrine with divinity and piousness. But this time, it was different. When the cyclone Amphan was leaving everything devastated in its path of destruction and people of Tarakeshwar were inside their homes, something dark and evil happened along the narrow alleys of Tarakeshwar which would even put humanity in shame.
Tarakeshwar is not only famous for Shiva’s shrine. It is also famous for Shiva’s companion. “Baba’s Shand”, which literally means “Mahadev’s Bull” is the name given by the people of Tarakeshwar to a black, massive but calm bull that wanders along each and every corner of the sacred city. The locals treat him with love, devotion and compassion. The locals often refer the bull as “Living Nandi”, and this title seems to suit the bull best. They treat him like Nandi living among the mortals and wandering across the town. The bull was as famous as the shrine itself. ‘Was’, because the bull is no more.
When Amphan was causing destruction, a group of unknown miscreants slaughtered and butchered the poor bull by slitting its throat with sharp blades, razors or probably machetes, if the locals and media news reports are to be believed. Some Locals came out and protested on social media. The dying cry of the bull got drowned in the massive sound of the roaring wind of the cyclone and people of Tarakeshwar could never know that their Nandi was in danger. When the people came out after the cyclone was over, they were met with shock due to a horrific discovery- their beloved Nandi was lying on a pool of blood that was oozing out of its slit open throat, as described by few locals.
A devotee protesting on social media
As per the recent updates in the local media, till now the police is not able to arrest the miscreants. The news was first reported by Khabar Tarkeshwar. Watch the video shared by local news media Khabar Tarakeswar:-
It is to be noted that this is not the first time when the bull has been attacked. In past years, there had been instances when miscreants had thrown boiling water and acid on the bull too. This was the third attempt when the bull was finally killed.
With the whole town being shocked with the news, a Hindu organization named “Sanatan Hindu Samaj” has submitted written complaint to the police, demanding immediate action against the culprits as the issue is religiously sensitive.
It should be also noted that few years ago TMC leader Firhad Bobby Hakim, who came into national media attention after referring his constituency “Garden Reach” as “Mini Pakistan” during an interview to Pakistani newspaper “The Dawn”, was appointed as chairman of “Tarakeshwar Temple Development Board”.This decision drew severe criticism and finally he resigned from the post back in June 2019.
After his resignation, BJP leader Subramanian Swami had praised Mamata Banerjee for taking a commendable decision. Currently, Firhad Hakim is still the Cabinet Minister of “Urban Development and Municipal Affairs”, Government of West Bengal as well as the Mayor of Kolkata.
The miscreants are still unknown, but to settle religious scores among men, an innocent animal was killed inhumanly. What has humanity come down to? Understand nature’s signal in form of cyclone Amphan, the more and more innocent natural elements will be harmed, the more suffering will be waiting for the humanity.