Photo-feature

Mountain district Manang marks Yartung festival [in photos]

- AASH GURUNG, Lamjung

Jul 31, 2017-

Manang is a remote mountain district of Nepal that borders with China’s autonomous state Tibet in the north. Manang’s remote village Manang in Nesyang Village Council is now observing the region’s popular Yartung festival.

Locals organise horse racing as part of the festival, considered the biggest on in the village. Youths have been racing their horses for the past five days. Monday is the last day of the festival. People aged 16 to 55 years are participating in this annual ritual.

The villagers appoint a leader to manage the festival. The person is termed Nandi in local language. The horse racing takes places in the vast land in between Bhakra and Manang.

‘Yartung’ is a Tibetan language. Karma Gurung, a Mhithewa (chief) of Manang, says ‘Yar’ means monsoon and ‘to’ means horse. The word Yarto later became Yartung.

According to Gurung, the origin of the festival is not known and it marks the end of cultivation season when people have leisure time.

Nesyang Village Council Chairman Kancha Ghaley shared that people visit Manang Gumba on the last day of the festival and receive blessings from Lama.

 

According to Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) Chief Babulal Tiruwa, Yartung is the ancient cultural festival of the locals. He said the festival not only preserves the culture but has also contributed in tourism of the region.

 

Photo courtesy: Kailash Tiwari, ACAP

Published: 31-07-2017 18:50

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