India’s ‘devadasi’ girls

23 01 2011

Why India’s ‘devadasi’ girls face a wretched life in the name of religion

Stretching back for centuries, the original devadasi were trained in prayer, dance and music. Holy enough to bring blessings and banish the “evil eye”, they were often courtesans but with a freedom of control over their lives that was not permitted to ordinary Indian women. It was British colonialists, with their Victorian morality, who first outlawed the practice. The Indian government followed suit in the 1980s…

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