Today is Dasara Festival. Since ancient times sighting ‘PalaPitta’ bird that is ‘Indian Roller’ also known as ‘Blue Jay’; on the day ofDasara Festival is considered to be very auspicious and a good omen. The bird isvery beautiful as you can see in the above pictures and it is a very popularbird in India. It is the “State Bird” of four States that is Andhra Pradesh,Karnataka, Orissa and Bihar.
As it has become difficult to sight the bird in recent times andimpossible to find it in the cities, some people from the villages catch thesebirds and roam around the towns and cities on Dasara Day showing them to peoplefor money. Since few years this practice has been banned but however villagersstill bring the birds into the city secretly and carry out their business. Callit tradition or superstition, we also believe in seeing ‘Pala Pitta’, today. Wehave no alternative but to see this bird in captivity. We are then buying itfrom the villager and taking it far out of the city (a joy ride for us) andfreeing it amidst plenty of trees.
The top two pictures are of my nephew, Dr. Sudheer, with the ‘PalaPitta’ that we set free today. I am sure the ‘Pala Pitta’ is safe and happy, weobviously are very happy, the villager who gave it to us is happy and I hopethose who care for the bird more than us will not find fault with what we havedone.