Sex workers in Varanasi dance in the Manikarnika crematorium, to worship former Rajput Emperor Man Singh and pray for salvation in next life.
Sex workers dance in a cremation ground for salvation: A rare ritual in Varanasi
In a very surprising series of event, women into prostitute gathered at the Manikarnika crematorium. The sex workers danced through the night as an act of salvation. According to the popular belief, they pray and hope for a better life the next time around.
This ritual, Indiatimes reports, is 450 years old and is celebrated at the Manikarnika crematorium. As part of the ritual, the sex workers worship former Rajput Emperor Man Singh and also ask for his blessings.
Caretaker of Mahashamshaan Nath Temple sheds some light on the age-old ritual. In an informative statement, Gulshan Kapoor shares his insight to a popular news website by saying:
“During Chaitra (first month of the Hindu calendar.) Navratri (Nine nights.), from the fifth day to the seventh day, a musical programme performance takes place as a ritual that started during the time of Emperor (Man Singh). Today is the last day of the programme where sex workers in order to please the king perform music and dance. This ritual is surely very ancient”.
“We come here with the same desire at the Emperor’s place, that we achieve liberation, we get purification from our deeds”. A sex worker said.
This ritual coincides with Navratri celebrations.