Most places of worship tell devotees to do penance or donate to the less fortunate as effective means to rid oneself of one's sins to ensure that you land up in heaven after death. But there's a temple in Rajasthan that's offering a much cheaper and easier alternative.
The Gautameshwar Mahadev Paapmochan Teertha Shiva temple in Rajasthan's Pratapgarh district has pilgrims going there to get 'paap-mukti' (freedom from sins) certificates. All they have to do is take in the temple's 'kund' (tank) and make a payment of Rs 11, says this report by The Times of India.
Temple authorities claim to have maintained a record of everyone who has got one of these certificates since Independence. Unfortunately they have no record of how effective they've been.
A priest at the temple was quoted as saying in the report mostly ostracised people of villages come to get their 'paap-mukti' certificates and a certified group of priests reportedly charge Re 1 for each certificate and Rs 10 for 'dosh-nivaran' (removal of obstacles).
The temple is reportedly known as the 'Haridwar of tribals' and attracts a lot of devotees every year in the month of May, when a eight-day fair is held.
In 2016, over two lakh devotees reportedly bathed in the `kund', but only three certificates of 'paapmukti' were issued. Maybe thanks to this publicity they can expect a lot more devotees lining up for them this time round.
Feature image source: Twitter/PTI