Devji Maharaj Mandir: Venue for the Annual ‘Bhoot Mela’
Exorcism has a deep rooted history with Indian cultures and values. Being a town entirely devoted to black magic- Mayong, debates surrounding Chetabadi is not new. Whether we talk about Mehendipur Balaji or Malajpur, ‘Bhoot’ forms the epitome of their importance. And just like we have been always telling you about the interesting tales and stories from across the country, this time the talk encircles Devji Maharaj Mandir. Much to your surprise his temple is the venue for the annual ‘Bhoot Mela’. This annual ‘bhoot pret ka mela’ is where one can find everything from uncanny sages to possessed people. Let’s check out what makes the Devji Maharaj Mandir a destination for all the ghosts round!
Devji Maharaj Mandir and ‘bhoot pret ka mela’
Almost 300 kilometers away from the city of Bhopal, an annual festival is celebrated at Malajpur known as “Bhoot Mela”. Just as it name sounds, this festival is entirely dedicated to the practice of exorcism. The bhoot mela is held at the temple on the first day of Paush Poornima and lies till Basant Panchmani. The fair is conducted in February when people especially from the regions of Madya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, and Andhra Pradesh joins in the celebration. Every year thousands of devotees from all over India flock to Malajpur to attend the festival. They believe that by attending the festival and participating into exorcism practices, their lives can become prosperous.
“Exorcism here is a centuries old practice. We hold Samadhi of Guru Deoji sant and on every evening, after the prayer, we treat those under the spell of ghosts and evil spirits.” said Bikhari Lal Yadav, a priest at the Devji Maharaj Mandir.
The guru Deoji was believed to be born in around 17000 BC with super natural powers. He was believed to turn sand into salt, clay into jaggery, stones into coconuts and also treating the blind! He became famous when once during droughts he made the granaries overflow. He also helped people by controlling evil spirits and getting rid of negativity. This was how his legacy shaped and the villagers constructed the temple in his remembrance. After his death exorcism has been conducted at the temple since centuries. It is said that the Malajpur Bhoot Mela is actually practiced since last 400 years! The exorcisms are conducted during the annual Bhoot Mela for free and devotees comes here to get rid of evil spirits, ghosts, and demons. According to the psychologists, they are the untreated patients of mental disorders who with passing time gets possessed by the illness. The families take them here for treatment by the practice of exorcism. They offer jaggeries if their wishes are fulfilled. In the year 2019, almost 1000 women were exorcised at the fair.
The practice of exorcism starts after the evening ‘aarti’ at the Devji Maharaj Mandir. There is a ritual where all the devotees perform ‘parikrama’; while the normal people walk anti clockwise, the possess walk clockwise. The mob starts chanting ‘Guru Maharaj Ki Jai’ and after that the families bring forward the possessed one by one. Once these practices are conducted, holy waters are sprinkled over the crowd and that’s when some people become hysterical and collapse unconsciously on the ground. Then the members of family or the priest lit camphor on their palms and some hit the ill with the brooms to get rid of the evil spirits. They ask the evil ghost inside several questions and hit people brutally in order to bring the ghost out. They make the victim run around the temple, drag them and takes many fierce actions. Not only these practices at Devji Maharaj Mandir are amusing but surprisingly most of the people said that they have been recovered after attending the Bhoot Mela.
Many Ngo’s and organization has claimed this practice of exorcism heinous and demands a ban. Psychologists suggest that these people are not possessed but are the patients of mental illness and thus has been trying to put a stop on this evil practice. Well whatever it may be, it’s interesting to know about such unique things happening around the country but more than that it is equally amusing to learn that people still believes in such things when the world has already moved on to the next level. But in the end we are talking about India, a country full of mysteries things that doesn’t need explanations. After all, we are talking about INCREDIBLE INDIA.