Photos: Namakkal, India – All Day Long Celebrations

Namakkal Street Scene
Namakkal Street Scene

The stop in Namakkal, Tamil Nadu was a very eventful one. It was a long day of none top people, excitement, energy, and interesting sights. The day started off with watching men racehorses through the town Roman-style called a Rekla Race.

Then we stopped at a poultry farm and saw what seemed like a million chickens being raised to lay eggs and then be slaughtered. After that, we joined the mayor of Namakkal to watch a massive Pongal Festival parade with some of the most amazing and craziest things I’ve ever seen. Then we finished the night with several dance performances by local high school students and adults.

Rekla Races

Rekla Races have race bulls or horses pull makeshift carts for some defined distance. The winners are then given prizes. This sport used to be popular during the three-day Pongal festival in Tamil Nadu. The Rekla Races were banned in 2014 due to cruelty and abuse that happened to some of the animals at the hands of the racers.

Rekla Race in Namakkal by Matthew T Rader
Rekla Race in Namakkal by Matthew T Rader
Rekla Race in Namakkal by Matthew T Rader
Rekla Race in Namakkal by Matthew T Rader

Poultry Farm

I had never been to a poultry farm. This was truly an eye-opening experience. Seeing all of the chickens in cages as they grow up and lay eggs and wait to be slaughtered. It was a sad sight but seems necessary in a country of over a billion people.

Pongal Festival Parade

Then we were invited by the mayor of Namakkal to sit with him and watch a massive Pongal Festival parade. At the parade, people did dances, performances, and stunts.

Mayor of Namakkal
Mayor of Namakkal

I finished the day off with an evening of musical dances that were mesmerizing and beautiful.

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