Maghe Sankranti observed across country
Jan 16, 2018-Maghi or Makar Sankranti, one of the most popular Nepali festivals, was observed throughout the country on Monday, by taking holy dips in rivers and ponds, worshipping at various temples and savouring various delicacies like ghee, yam, khichadi and sweets.
The festival marks the sun’s transit into Makara (Capricorn) which means the end of the winter solstice and the start of longer days.
Celebrations were held across the country.
A large number of devotees thronged Hindu shrines, especially at confluence of major rivers, to mark the festival.
The festival is also considered a good day to bathe in sacred rivers and lakes to offer thanks to the sun and wash away sins.
Devotees took holy dips at Devghat, Dolalghat, Baraha Kshetra, Ridi and Triveni among other rivers, across the country. Big religious fairs were held on the day, especially at the confluence of the Kali Gandaki and Trishuli rivers in Devghat.
People from the Tharu community thronged Capital’s Tundikhel on Monday to mark their annual Maghi festival. Marked as the beginning of New Year, Maghi is the biggest festival of the community. Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, who attended a programme as the chief guest witnessed various Tharu cultural shows. Attired in traditional Tharu dress, the celebrants performed cultural dance making a spectacular view in the open ground of Kathmandu Valley.
Likewise, the Newar community observes the festival ‘Ghyo Chaku Sanlhu’ by having ghee, chaku and remembering the departed souls. The seniors apply mild-hot edible oil to heads of juniors on this day. It is believed that eating such items as ghee and chaku, sesame seed candy, vegetables and yam, and giving them away in charity on this day after taking a holy dip helps one become healthier.
A large number of devotees throng Devghat, Barahkshetra, Ridi, Panauti, Dolalghat and Kankai to take a holy dip. The festival also has significance in view of Ayurveda and medical science. Food items that are taken on this day are the sources of balance diet which increase the immunity power of the human body.
On this day, a special delicacy prepared by mixing black gram and rice with hot spices and ghee known as Khichadi is served.
Prez, VP, PM extend greetings
President Bidya Devi Bhandari, Vice President Nanda Bahadur Pun and Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba extended best wishes to all the Nepalis at home and abroad on the occasion of the Makar Sankranti and the Maghi festivals.
They expressed belief that such festivals helped people maintain mutual harmony and fraternity and further strengthen national unity in the country rich in geographical, cultural, religious, ethnic and linguistic diversities.
Published: 16-01-2018 08:07