Vellalur Madurai district : A bizarre ritual of making girl children in the stage of attaining puberty into objects of divinity among a section of caste Hindus in a village in Madurai district has opened a Pandora's box. Under this practice, in vogue for centuries in Vellalur, 7 girls in their teens and pre-teens are bequeathed to their village deity Yezhaikaatha Amman every year to bring what village elders claim progeny and prosperity. But what is shocking in this disturbing religious exercise is the bunch of innocent girls, aged between 10 and 14, is made to live inside the small temple for as many as 15 days - all decked up in jewels and more shockingly with no upper garments. The process of selecting the 7 girls to be 'offered' to the deity for a fortnight begins on the last Tuesday in the Tamil month of Aavani every year. Scores of adolescent girls - all from the same community hailing from 62 villages - wearing silk sarees like wrap-around skirts and gold ornaments and with no blouses to cover their developing breast buds are paraded in front of the Yezhaikaatha Amman Temple at Vellalur.