Kuthiyottam Boys in Attukal Temple, Thiruvananthapuram
Kuthiyottam, a ritualistic symbolic representation of human bali (Human Sacrifice), is one of the most important offerings in Attukal Bhagavathy Temple located in Thiruvananthapuram, the capital city of Kerala state, India. This ritual is performed by young boys of age below 13 years on the Pongala day - the final day of the ten day festival.
These boys observe seven-day Kuthiyotta Vritham (penance) during the festival that includes staying at the temple, sleeping on the floor, strict diet restrictions and bathing three times a day. The boys have to bow before the Goddess 1008 times, after morning and evening oblations. These boys represent the wounded soldiers of Goddess Mahishasura Mardini.