December 19, 2006

Tree Nuptials offer solace

Tree nuptials offer solace
GG2.NET NEWS [06/12/2006]

HUNDREDS of people are flocking to a remote Indian town to offer prayers to two trees that were 'married' off in a bid to keep evil spirits at bay, officials said on Wednesday.

Alarmed by a string of accidental deaths, murders and burglaries, local people decided it was time the trees, one a banyan tree which had wrapped itself around the trunk of the other, tied the knot.

More than 250 people gathered in English Bazaar, in West Bengal state, on Tuesday for the ceremony as priests chanted hymns and decorated the conjoined trunks of two 25-year-old trees with colourful cloth, streaks of vermilion and garlands.

'There was an evil eye casting a spell and a few senior government employees had planted two trees here to bring peace but could not organise the marriage ceremony as they died from illness,' Gouranga Mandal, a local official, told agencies.

'The trees only can save us,' added Lakshmi Das, a 30-year-old housewife, who presented the trees with two saris and other wedding gifts.


Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers, and I linger on the shore, And the individual withers, and the world is more and more.  -- Alfred, Lord Tennyson

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