Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Cattle delights in Shukrati

Every dog has his day. It's true in case of cattle, at least, during the Shukrati celebrations. Shukrati is most popularly known as Tihar and Deepawali. Some call it Diya Bati and Hunka Pati in the Eastern Nepal. On the day of Govardhan Pooja the cattle owners colour their cattle, goats and serve them Ayurvedic concoctions.

When I approached a cattle owner, he was grinding a handful of Dulfi (Leucas aspera). After grinding, he filtered the juice with a white piece of cloth. The juice was green and had strong aroma. He told that the juice had healing properties. It keeps the cough, cold and fever at bay.

Dulfi (c)

Leucas aspera is used in traditional medicine in the Philippines to treat scorpion bites. It is reported to have ability to help reduce fever. The juice of the flower can be extracted and used to treat sinusitis, headaches and intestinal worms in children, as mentioned in Wikipedia.

He then prepared another mixture. A handful of black pepper powder was mixed in mustard oil. The yellowish black mixture is again an anti-dote to cough and cold. In Ayurvedic medicine black pepper has been used to aid digestion, improve the appetite, treat coughs, colds, breathing and heart problems, colic, diabetes, anaemia and piles. Click the link for details.

These concoctions not only cure the animals but also provide them strength to fight. The cattle herders organise a fight at the grazing fields, generally a river bank in Govardhan Pooja. The strongest one takes the hurra, a bale of grass home.

Read in detail about the Shukrati celebrations by clicking the link below.

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