Villagers perform last rites of favourite monkey

October 30th, 2009 - 7:09 pm ICT by IANS  

Dabtori, Oct 30 (IANS) They considered him one of their own, and when ‘Chhotu’, a monkey, died the residents of an Uttar Pradesh village gave him a funeral according to vedic traditions.
Residents of Dabtori village in Badaun district, some 250 km from here, lit Chhotu’s pyre Thursday evening along the banks of Aril river. Villagers, both men and women, turned up in huge numbers as the last rites were performed.

“We were deeply attached with Chhotu, who had come to the locality around six months back. It came as a shock for me when I heard the monkey was found dead in the Lalula Nagla area,” Ravendra Singh, a villager, told IANS by phone.

According to the villagers, before the last rites, Chhotu’s body was wrapped in a yellow cloth and put outside a Hanuman temple where sacred water from the river Ganga was sprinkled on it.

Madan Singh Katheria, a villager, said: “During this period villagers used to feed monkey bananas and nuts. Gradually, we developed a bonding with the animal and the locals later started giving food to Chhotu on a regular basis,” Katheria added.

In India, the monkey is revered by many as a divine incarnation of Hindu god Hanuman.

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