It Is All About Pandavas In This Karnataka Village

All traditions and beliefs in Bannikoppa Village in Haveri District of Karnataka revolve around the legends based on the five Pandava brothers in Mahabharata. Bannikoppa villagers believe that the Pandavas lived in their village for one year during their exile period. Majority of the male members in the village are named after the Pandavas. The village domesticates only cow and no other animal because Pandavas did not like domesticating any other animal.

When some villagers tried to rear goats or breed fowls, they all were killed by rare diseases. Only Lingayat Panchamasali community members live in the village as it is believed that other community members cannot live in the village. So other community members don’t stay overnight at the village.

A century-old temple in the village is named after the Pandavas and it is the only temple in Bannikoppa.

Bannikoppa Village is about 6 km from Shiggaon in Haveri District of Karnataka.

Times of India Reports

Elders of this 250-household village believe they shouldn't rear domesticated livestock like sheep or goats, neither poultry for traditional reasons. Legend has it that the Pandavas lived here for one year and since then no other animal than cows are bred here.

Dharmappa Pujar, priest of the only temple here, claims the belief is that the Pandavas were not particularly in favor of domesticating fowl.

Carpenters, masons and professionals who do other odd jobs finish their work during the day and leave the village before night.

True to their veneration of the Pandavas, the male members of the village adopt the names of the five brothers.

Former chairman of the Karnataka folklore academy, Ramachandra Gowda, says he hasn't heard of a village where men are named after Pandavas. “Bannikoppa is a revelation to me. More research is needed in folklore to uncover such interesting traditions.”