SOLAPUR, INDIA - In what may seem a terrifying ritual to some, on the first of May in Solapur, India, screaming infants are dropped from the tower of a temple.
Every year, the parents of a handful of the plumpest and juiciest newborns are honored with having their children selected to be thrown from the town's highest roof.
"If the selected babies bounce harmlessly off the concrete, then it signals to us that this year's crop isn't quite ready yet, and must stay in the womb for at least another month of ripening," said Shah Bhratphur, a village elder. "However, if they splatter, it signals that the crop is fully developed, and this year's harvest can begin."
The annual spring tradition has been used for more than 500 years by villagers in order to determine if it will be a good season for child-bearing.