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Why People In Hyderabad Are Lining Up To Swallow Raw Fish

In this annual event in Hyderabad, thousands queue to swallow live fish, a purported cure for respiratory problems.

Updated
India
2 min read
People look on as a woman eats  live fish ( Photo Courtesy: <i>The News Minute</i>)

With thousands of people expected at the fish prasadam distribution venue in Hyderabad, the city police have issued an appeal for people to remain calm in order to avoid a stampede.

The Bathini brothers, who claim that the fish prasadam can cure respiratory illnesses, are distributing it in the exhibition grounds for 24 hours starting 8:30 am on Wednesday. The prasadam involves swallowing a small live fish.

However, NGOs say the ‘”cure’” is of unknown provenance and unhygienic as the people thrust their fingers into thousands of throats without a proper hygienic procedure. There is no scientific evidence that a squirming fish down the esophagus clears up asthmatic lungs.

Still, the brothers claim that there is a scientific precedence for their treatment and thousands of people continue to flock to Hyderabad every year.

In a media release, the police requested the people from regions of Hyderabad and Telangana to arrive at the venue after 2 pm on Wednesday to “avoid stampede-like conditions.”

Police also said that after 8:30 am on Thursday, the Bathini brothers would continue to dispense the prasadam at their house in Doodhbowli area of the city.

People lined up to eat the raw fish at Hyderabad (Photo Courtesy: <i>The News Minute</i>)
People lined up to eat the raw fish at Hyderabad (Photo Courtesy: The News Minute)
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There is no need to panic and get excited, prasadam will be distributed till the last person arrived at exhibition grounds. People are requested to avoid morning time for taking Fish Prasadam to avoid congestion and stampede and to cooperate with police.
The Police 

Fish prasadam sufficient for five lakh people is being prepared, procured and brought to the exhibition grounds, the release said. Last year, 56,000 people took the prasadam.

(With agency inputs.)

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