On the occasion of Dussehra festival, the stick fight in Kurnool district’s Dewara Gattu turned bloody once again. Even in the heavy rain that fell for about two hours, the Bunny festival was held in a range. Thousands of people belonging to both communities beat the idol of Malamalleswara Swamy with sticks as usual. Many people reached the temple premises at midnight to take Malamalleswara Swamy. Both sides beat with sticks for Swami. They attacked each other in the name of traditional festival. More than 70 people were injured. Heads are cracked. The injured devotees were treated at a temporary hospital set up on the spot. It seems that the condition of two of them is critical. However, the officials refused to reveal the details of the injured. The police did not allow the media to enter the hospital.
No matter how many measures the police and authorities took to prevent any untoward incidents from happening in this traditional festival, they could not stop the violence of the devotees. A large number of people from Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka attended the festival. Ravindra Reddy (17) of Mada Suguru village in Karnataka, who had come with his family members to watch the festival, died of a heart attack.
In order to bring awareness to the people of about 40 villages and the devotees of Swami regarding this stick fight, the government officials and voluntary organizations have been carrying out many programs for several years. Still not giving any results.
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