The Bathini Goud family in Hyderabad hosts a peculiar exhibition every year, where they claim to provide Indians with free live fish medicine.
For 175 years, thousands of people from all over the country have been visiting Bathini-Mrigasira Karthi Fish Prasadam, which takes place on the nights of ‘Mrigasira Karti’ which falls in June with the onset of the annual monsoon.
The 3cm fish is first tucked inside a live murrel or sardine fish, then dipped into a yellow herbal paste and then pressed down the throat of the suffering patients by the Goud family.
Long, long ago, in what we now call Doodhbowli lived a toddy merchant called Veeranna Goud. Veeranna was known for his helpful nature.
He would spend 25 percent of his profit from each pot of toddy on the needy. On a stormy Mrigasira Karti night in the year 1845, a wandering holy man from the Himalayas who was southbound knocked on his door. He was soaked wet because of the train, hungry, and requested shelter.
“My great grandfather offered him shelter, food, and some dry clothes. The sage rested that night and on the following day when he was about to leave, he passed on a secret,” reveals Bathini Harinath Goud.
That secret is now what we call the ‘fish medicine’ or the ‘fish prasadam.’ Sounds like a page from grandpa’s tales, but true vouches for Goud. Since then, the Goud household has been giving this medicine to those suffering from asthma.
They claim that the small living fish travels wiggling its way through the human throat, pushing the phlegm and making it easier for people to breathe.
Also, the herbal dip used for the medicine remains a secret and is said to be transferred into the Goud Family by a Hindu saint in 1845.
An estimated population of 3 lac people gathered on the night of Fish Prasadam with a security force of 1000 police officers guarding on the outskirts of the exhibition.
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