Indian village worships cat as goddess

Bekkalale village near Mandya in southern India’s Karnataka still follows a 1000-year-old tradition of worshipping cat as goddess. The Mangamma temple – three mini shrines built by three families – conducts prayers on Tuesdays drawing hundreds of devotees. People believe that Hindu goddess of wealth Lakshmi came to their village in the form of a cat to protect them from deadly diseases and calamities. Each family in Bekkalale keeps one or more cats and anyone who hurts them will face banishment from the village.