The down-hearted global practice of human branding!!

If you read the history of  human civilizations and their growth, one disgusting factor emerges clearly that is man's inherent barbarism and animal instincts, involving extreme violence beyond comprehension that transcend countries, religions and cultures. 

Men for centuries had practiced religious and cultural fanaticism and casteism, racism, etc. In this modern world, they raise their ugly head then and there across the globe, resulting in mayhem, injuries and death. As for  the societies, world over there exist innumerable social evils that are based on superstition, one being  human branding among many hill tribes of India. In the past, human branding was used on a large scale by the Western slave owners and others.
Human branding is the process in which a mark is burned into the skin of a living person, resulting in permanent scarification. This is done either with approval as a form of body modification; or under coercion, as a punishment. It may also be practiced as a "rite of passage" such as within a tribal community, or to identify a member in an organization. The  brand marks, it is said,  will help  family members to evade or treat the offending agent.
Branding is a traditional practice among the various tribes in India with which the skin is burnt with a hot iron rod or other metallic object to treat various medical conditions.
It is said to be a cure for common diseases like malaria, jaundice, meningitis and convulsions.

It is thought to be centuries old, and has attained a sort of religious sanctity and began to be associated with local deities.

This practice is still very much prevalent in villages in India.

Various body parts are branded for different diseases: the abdomen for malaria and jaundice, the neck or the forehead for meningitis and the wrist for convulsions.

Chinese punishment, whipping a lawbreaker wretchedshekels -
The red rod is just one of the instruments used, others include burning ropes and metal rings.
These ancient methods are crude and inhumane, causing the treatment to be unbearable even carrying the risk of complications.

Acute infection, transmission of blood-borne pathogens, allergic reactions, and complications which arise from third-degree burns are caused after branding.

 As if these were not enough, the nasty practice of putting saliva, ash or untested herbal paste on the burn wounds make matters worse.

Source:  Journal of Tropical Gastroentrology

Some facts:

01. American, European  and other colonial slave owners  branded millions of slaves brought from Africa and other countries. There were several brandings, e.g. for the Portuguese crown and the (consecutive) private owner (s), an extra cross after baptism as well as by African slave catchers.

02. Branding a slave, in those olden days, was something like marking properties like  cattle.  For the slave owners, it was to prevent escape and establish ownership.

03. Ancient Romans  used to brand runaway slaves with the letters FGV (for fugitivus).

04. As for a loop in  slavery and criminal law,  a convict is branded and legally reduced, with or without time limit, to a slave-like status, such as on the galleys (in France branded GAL or TF travaux forc├ęs 'forced labour' until 1832), in a penal colony, or auctioned to a private owner.

05. In criminal law, branding with a hot iron was a way of punishment consisting of marking the subjects as if  they were goods or animals, in conjunction with heir reduction of status in life.

06. Convicted criminals were punished by branding mark, as besides enduring painful burns on a normally visible part of the body. Some convicts would carry  visible  imposition of an indelible criminal record on the body that would cause public humiliation.

  07. Letter F (Fur)  was marked on robbers, like runaway slaves, by the Romans ;  the miners, and convicts were branded on the forehead for identification. During the time of Constantine I the the branding was done  on the hand, arm or calf and not on the face. 

08. At the time of the Roman Emperor Trajan, Christians experienced painful punishment on their face  on a judge's order for refusal to sacrifice.

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09. In the 16th century,  a  cross  was branded on the foreheads  of a radical Anabaptist for refusing to recant their faith and join the Roman Catholic church.

 In the 17th century North America, married couples, found  convicted for adultery were branded with an "A" letter on their chest, and for other crimes, such as "D" for drunkenness and "B" for blasphemy.

Branding the mark  as a code for the crime was prevalent  in Canadian military prisons D for Desertion, BC for Bad Character; most branded men were, it is believed,  shipped off to a penal colony

During the American civil war, branding was used for a time by the Union Army.

To stop flight, or escape from torture   in Louisiana, Slave owners used severe punishments . They would often brand the slaves' palms, shoulders, buttocks, or cheeks with a branding iron.

To recapture escaped runaway slaves, branding was sometimes used  to help the locals easily identify the runaway.

To to punish their slaves whipping  and branding  were used by the slave owners. Initially they would  prefer whipping to branding. They were allowed by the laws in the USA and in  S. Carolina,  when a slave ran away, if it was his  first offense, he would receive no more than forty lashes. Then the second offense would be branding. Branded letter R on their forehead  would signify  that they were a criminal, and a runaway.

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