Pooja Trap & Being Vegetarian
Pushkar Travel Blog› entry 22 of 30 › view all entries
Pushkar Pooja Trap
The heart of Pushkar is a holy lake ... this is the scene of the biggest tourist trap which I'll call the Pushkar Pooja Trap. Holy men (and those pretending to be) will accost visitors on the streets and hand them a marigold then strike up a conversation about how many family members they have. The victim is then taken to the lake where a blessing (pooja) is made for each declared family member. One pays at least INR100 (about EUR1.50) per pooja, which is horrendously high by Indian standards ... that's about a plate of chicken tikka in a flash restaurant.
Some wristbands are given to the victim (seemingly as an evidence of victimisation to prevent further victimisation!)
I kept my hands in my pockets or had them wrapped around the straps of my bag while walking around the more notorious parts of town ... and managed to get away scot-free.
In keeping with the strict Hindu faith, no meat or eggs are served in Pushkar. Pancakes are made without eggs ... eggless wonders! However, I saw cakes in one bakery ... I had been told that they use custard powder instead, not acknowledging that it contains eggs. Also I doubt the gooey cheese on pizzas served in town are rennet-free either. Not my problem.