PATNA: As the global pandemic continues to spread its wrath in India with an increasing number of coronavirus cases, 'Corona Devi' has emerged in the state of Bihar as a goddess. Rural women believe that it would help them not get affected by the virus.
Multiple districts in Bihar like Saran, Muzaffarpur, Nalanda, Vaishali and Gopalganj has observed women from the villages worshipping and thronging water bodies to offer their prayers to 'Corona Devi' in the past few days. The videos which feature the rituals are also going viral on social media. Although women in the video are seen practising social distancing.
A woman belonging to the Phulvariya ghat, Gopalganj was seen putting, cloves, cardamom, flowers, 7 ladoos and jaggery syrup in 7 holes she dug in the ground. She said that through this offering she has worshipped 'Corona Devi' would who would rid the world from the pandemic.
Even in the Sarveshwarnath Temple situated in Brahmaputra, Muzaffarpur women have been performing the ritual since the last 3 days. One of them mentioned that she realised after watching a video that a ritual which involves laddoos, sesame seeds and flowers can help in chasing corona away.
Another lady expressed that she has been doing the worship based on a dream she had.
In the district of Buxar, women have begun praying to 'Corona Devi'. A bunch of women took a dip in the holy river of Ganga and offered their prayers near its bank. Yet again, 7 pits were dug out and jaggery, sesame seeds, laddoos along with flowers were buried in it. Incense sticks were also lit.
Other areas are offering 'Poha' to the supposed goddess 'Corona Devi'.
However, the matter has also been viewed with a rational perspective. Prof. B.N, Singh from Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar Bihar University has said, "Whenever there is any trouble upon us, we all take refuge in God. On many occasions, faith takes the form of superstition. We are in the same situation. People have reposed faith in superstition to escape the corona epidemic." Singh teaches sociology in the university.
Dr Tribhuvan Narayan Singh, a civil surgeon from Gopalganj also mentioned, "Corona is an epidemic and its medical treatment is necessary." And labelled the rituals and worships as a complete superstition.