By Swami Harshananda
Animal sacrifices were quite common during the days of Vedic yajṅas. The Niruḍhapaśubandha was one of them. It could be done as a part of Somayāga or even independently. The procedure seems to have been reconstructed by the authors of the śrautasutras from the original material available in the Brāhmaṇas. It was to be performed by an āhitāgni either twice or once a year as he-goat was the animal prescribed for immolation. This ritual is done for the deities Indra, Agni, Surya and Prajāpati. Six priests were needed for its performance.
- Āhitāgni means the one who had established Vedic fires.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore