Bengaluru: The state came one step closer to banning practices like human sacrifices and Made Snana, which sees devotees rolling on leftovers of a meal or Urule Seve that has people rolling on the ground for long distances with the Cabinet on Wednesday approving the tabling of the Anti-Superstition Bill in the coming session of the state legislature in Belagavi in November.
While banning all kinds of superstitious practices, the Bill is silent on subjects like vaastu and astrology and animal sacrifices. Speaking to reporters after the Cabinet meeting, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister, T B Jayachandra said the Bill was on the lines of a similar law in Maharashtra.
The new law in-the-making bans all inhuman and evil practices as well as black magic in the search for " hidden treasures" and so on, naked parading of women in the name of worship or "Betthale seve," beating and tying up of people in chains on the pretext of exorcism, and rituals that involve inflicting injuries on oneself such as inserting hooks into the body or pulling a chariot by a hook inserted into the body.
While the Bill does not ban voluntary walking on embers, it prohibits forcing people to do so in the name of religion and causing them injury.
Although the government was under pressure to ban sacrifices of animals like chicken, goats, pigs and buffaloes, widely seen in villages of the state, the Bill is silent on this. the brainchild of Minister Kagodu Thimmappa, who proposed it in the Legislative Assembly in 2015 when he was Speaker, the draft Bill was first submitted to the Cabinet for approval in May this year.
Replying to a query, Mr Jayachandra said provision had been made to amend the Bill, if necessary and future governments could make modifications to it, if they chose to. The Bill has been strongly backed by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who has made no bones about his rationalist views and his opposition to superstition.