Search icon

Compassion opposes animal sacrifice festival

News Section Icon Published 04/04/2014

Compassion is calling for the world's largest animal sacrifice festival, to be stopped. Taking place in December 2014, it is known as 'Gadhimai Festival'.

The festival is held in honour of the Hindu Goddess, Gadhimai, and is held every five years in southern Nepal. At the last festival in 2009, it is estimated that a quarter of a million animals were brutally slaughtered in the open air. Included in this, were tens of thousands of water buffalos who were cruelly decapitated.

Animals were not stunned before being slaughtered which means they would have experienced extreme pain and suffering at the most vulnerable moment of their lives. Some reports have suggested animals necks were hacked at multiple times before successful slaughter. Compassion believes that all slaughter should be humane and that animals should be handled with care and respect.

We will be working with local campaign group Animal Welfare Network Nepal (AWNP) to urge the Nepalese government not to subsidise Gadhimai as they have done previously, to the tune of tens of thousands of USD, and to act to stop the festival taking place.

Pru Elliott, Campaign and Investigations Officer, said "To our knowledge this is the biggest sacrificial farm animal slaughter in the world and many animals involved will experience incomprehensible fear and pain. 'Tradition' is no excuse to cause such suffering.

"It is unacceptable that the Nepalese Government subsidise this event and smaller events like it that happen across Nepal. This inhumane slaughter must be stopped"


You are using an outdated browser which we do not support. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience and security.

If you have any further questions regarding this, or any other matter, please get in touch with us at We aim to respond to all queries within two working days. However, due to the high volume of correspondence that we receive, it may occasionally take a little longer. Please do bear with us if this is the case. Alternatively, if your query is urgent, you can contact our Supporter Engagement Team on +44 (0)1483 521 953 (lines open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm).