Interesting News

12 Mind-Boggling Rituals Of Uttarakhand That Will Make You Drench In Sweat

The world is full of strange rituals and ceremonies, often unheard by most of us. Be it a Voodoo juju in Africa or a weird ritual of exhuming the dead and wrapping them in fresh clothes in Madagascar.

Rituals and traditional practices performed all over the world never fail to make our eyes pop and our jaws drop. It’s difficult to digest how insane and illogical a lot of these rituals sound to us but for those who follow them, it is as natural as breathing.

If you are consumed by the mysteries of fun facts, and strange religious beliefs give you a kick of a new perspective, then you must read this further. We are not talking about foreign rituals here but of our own.

Uttarakhand is a state of festivals. The place is often called “The Land of God” (Dev-Bhoomi) because it is believed that every shingle and crag of this land hosts God himself.

Let me take you through the strange journey of Rituals of Uttarakhand:

1. Calling of Gods, Local Deities, and long Dead Ancestors 

Ever heard of deities or ancestors possessing some pure soul for a short time to answer the questions troubled people are looking for? That’s what happens when a special prayer ceremony called Jagari is organized in the dead of the night by the special pujari where possessed people dance around a big blazing fire with strange music.

Rituals of Uttarakhand

Sounds like a bonfire, but it isn’t. People who get possessed are transformed and even do impossible things like holding the burning coal with their bare hands. Without being burnt. No chemicals were used.

Don’t believe me? Visit any old village and you can easily come across such poojas. You will be cordially invited since it is open for all to witness.

2. Sacrificial Lambs    

Making animal sacrifices is nothing new or unheard of but the way it is done in some of the temples of Uttarakhand, makes it stand out. Sometimes there are seven Goat sacrificed at once as a promised sacrifice to Goddess Mahakali.

Rituals of Uttarakhand

Goddess Kali and most of the local deities and ancestors are presented with these offerings, in hopes of fulfilling wishes like marrying your daughter off to a good family or getting rid of some age-old ailment.

3. Offer a Sacrifice if you bear a son

More than mandatory to offer a sacrifice to all the deities who are your home-gods or isht devtas, if the person can afford it.

Rituals of Uttarakhand

It is believed that it pleases them, and they offer their blessings in return for a long happy life of the child.

4. You forever carry your ancestors

Your ancestors are your responsibility even after they have been dead for a hundred years. And no, not talking about the usual ceremonies performed on the day of their death.

Rituals of Uttarakhand

Did you know they can be given to you as a dowry when you wed and go into another family? Astounding, isn’t it? There is more.

You have to take care of their temples, feed them and pray to them unless you have a daughter to whom you can transfer the responsibilities. These are for those ancestors whose souls still linger around.


5. Fairies possessing pretty newlyweds

 It is believed in Uttarakhand that if a young girl or a newlywed woman is acting all weird, the fairies must have possessed them. These fairies come down on the highest peaks of snow-clad regions and dance at noon.

Rituals of Uttarakhand

And God forbid, if you happen to pass by and you are pretty, they take a liking to you and get stuck to you unless some witchcraft ritual is performed to detach them from your body. I bet our pretty actresses should stay the hell away.

6. Poking the stomach of a naughty child with hot rods

As much as this sounds appalling and primitive, locals swear by this remedy of straightening a naughty child.

Rituals of Uttarakhand

I would like to die before I even think of doing something like this to my child or any child. But those are the rituals.

7. Stone pelting ceremony in Devidhura

During the preparation for Raksha Bandhan, this fate called Bagwal Mela is organized in Devidhura, where a chosen few are made to fight by throwing stones at each other. Although the ceremony lasts just for about 20 minutes, but still?

Rituals of Uttarakhand

The folklore behind is that earlier there was the tradition of Man-sacrifice to Goddess Barahi. The offering was mainly blood, which later turned into the blood sacrifice by stone pelting (thank God), which must be equal to the quantity of blood a man has in his body.

Sounds like paganism in Norse mythology, isn’t it?

Also Read: Facts About Netflix’s Ghoul That Is Based on Jinn’s From Arabic Folklore

8. Polyandry

Well, this certainly will make you curious. Yes, Polyandry is practiced by a small group of followers of Pandavas in the lower regions of the Himalayas, near Dehradun.

Rituals of Uttarakhand

Since Draupadi had five husbands, they believed that if a girl married the eldest brother, all the other brothers automatically became her husband. Sounds gross?

If she has sterility issues, only then the husband can marry another woman. Well, this certainly gives her a lot of power over the whole family. Isn’t it?

9. Ghughutia Festival

 Rituals of Uttarakhand

The Ghughutia Festival, celebrated in Uttarakhand’s Pauri Garhwal district, is a cheerful festival identified by the ringing of ghughutis, little bells attached to people’s ankles. People dress up in colourful costumes and walk in processions throughout the celebration, creating a vibrant environment filled with the rhythmic jingling of bells.

The importance rests in the communal celebration, in which the sound of the ghughutis is said to ward off evil spirits and provide good fortune to the community. It’s a season of unity, joy, and cultural expression, granting a special excellence to Uttarakhand’s cultural environment.

10. Chaaliya – The Dance of Swords

Rituals of Uttarakhand

Chholiya (or Chhaliya) is a dance style popular in Uttarakhand’s Kumaon region. It started as a sword dance to accompany a wedding procession, but it is now done at a variety of auspicious events.
It is notably popular in the Kumaon division’s districts of Almora, Bageshwar, Champawat, and Pithoragarh, and has even expanded to the Garhwal division. 

11. Kudikaran – The Fire-walking Ritual

Rituals of Uttarakhand

Devotees in Kudikaran walk barefoot over burning coal as an act of penance and devotion. Because the great heat from the flames is said to purify the soul, this ceremony is a scorching experience for participants.

12. Doliya Festival

Rituals of Uttarakhand

The Doliya festival, devoted to Goddess Kali, includes ceremonial animal sacrifice. The sight of sacrifice rites, coupled with strong drumming and chanting, can instil fear and anxiety.


The strangeness of this world never stops to overwhelm. You think you know it all and have seen it all, but then in some corner of the world, things are way different than you are used to knowing.

Have you come across any strange rituals? Do let us know in the comments.

Find Your Daily Dose of NEWS and Insights - Follow ViralBake on WhatsApp and Telegram

Stuti Talwar

Expressing my thoughts through my words. While curating any post, blog, or article I'm committed to various details like spelling, grammar, and sentence formation. I always conduct deep research and am adaptable to all niches. Open-minded, ambitious, and have an understanding of various content pillars. Grasp and learn things quickly.

Related Articles

Back to top button

AdBlocker Detected

Please Disable Adblock To Proceed & Used This Website!