POLITICAL FESTIVITIES

  • Voice Of The People

Apr 26, 2016-

While all other communities including the Madhesis are chasing gold, gilded chairs and other assorted goodies in the Kathmandu Valley, Newars are holding cultural fiestas by the dozen a week or a month to amuse and entertain foreign visitors and locals alike. From the chariot festival (‘Invoking rain god’, April 15, Page 1) to staging the grand finale of the nine-day Bisket Jatra (‘The home stretch’, April 18, Page 3), Newari traditions are world heritage attractions for tourists. However, Newars are turning all festivals into superficial carnivals bereft of inherent esoteric and secretive rituals that go into their intricate observation. Some of these celebrations are religious and esoteric in nature and are barred from viewing, let alone participation, even for close family members. Newars should not dilute the significance of their religious and cultural practices by putting up fine extravaganzas on the street for mass entertainment. Rather than pulling chariots, piercing tongues, rolling on filthy roads, carrying heavy idols, they should take cue from others and hold potent political festivities for their identity and rights. If they have to pull chariots or stage song and dances, they should do so exclusively for the pleasure of those who can pay. After all not even born comedians put up their shows for free. Culturally-rich, colourful and exotic dances and tongue piercing sessions can earn the protagonists plenty of dollars abroad unlike here where the appreciation of a rich culture is limited to eating buff momos, drinking rakshi and flirting with Newari dames. It is time Newars started staging political rallies to bag all positions of power and profit ranging from gangsters to ambassadors, government secretaries to ministers and prime minister. 

- Manohar Shrestha, via email

 

KUDOS TO KHADKA

Paras Khadka has made a brilliant century as Nepal chased Namibia’s 239-9 with one ball remaining, proving that he is a great player (‘Nepal edge Namibia in thriller’, April 19, Page 11). However, even great players cannot always perform well and lead their team to victory. Low team morale is also responsible for the inability to secure victory. We need morale boosting sessions before a game starts so that players are in the right frame of mind to perform well and win matches.

- Saroj Wagle, Bara

Published: 26-04-2016 08:13

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