Every year the Bathini Mrugasira Fish festival sees people travel to the state capital of Telangana to provide this magical drug or as they call it fish prasadam. A live fish is fed as prasadam whose mouth is stuffed with an unknown herbal concoction.
It is believed that this herbal concoction with the fish is an ailment for respiratory related problems and this ‘fish prasadam’ has been working in ailing asthama related problems.
The Department of Fisheries and the Government of Andhra Pradesh provide the fish for a small price – equivalent to a few cents per taste.
The tradition of fish prasadam has been undertaken by the Bathini Goud family for close to 170 years and this year saw 35,000 people take part. The Nampally exhibition grounds saw a huge turnout of asthama patients.
The herbal is stuffed in the mouth of live murrel fish which is 2-2.5 inches and is slipped into the mouth of the patient.
The Bathini Mrugasira Fish tradition dates back to 1845 when patriarch Veeranna Goud was bestowed the wisdom of a holy man, who passed on a secret herbal remedy. The story goes that the mystery man told him to provide the fish and herb treatment to asthma patients, with the true ingredients of the yellow paste remaining a closely guarded family secret up until today.
This fish prasadam was opened this morning at exhibition grounds at Nampally and will continue for the next 24 hours. While many rationalists question the cure as merely blind faith, the Bathini Goud family, who have been administering “fish prasadam” since 1845, said the cure is permanent and effective.
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