Kathmandu [Nepal], Jan 16 (ANI): People belonging to the Tharu community celebrated Maghi festival with much fanfare in the Kathmandu Valley on Wednesday.
Maghi is the biggest festival of the Tharu people, who form the fourth-largest community in the Himalayan nation, marking the community's new year. The festival is celebrated over a week.
"For us it is special celebrations here. We wear our cultural dress and then we eat different cuisines along with a display of grandeur and fervour," Suyel Tharu who came to the Tundikhel playground in Kathmandu to celebrate the festival told ANI.
During the festival, Tharus clean and decorate their houses to welcome their New Year, while also performing Shakiya Naach, a special dance organised during the festival. It is believed that the sun, on this day, begins its journey towards the north pole thereby increasing mercury in days to come.
The Tharus bathe in rivers early in the morning and pray for the prosperity and well being.
"It is the new year of Tharu Community, which has been celebrating the festival as a tradition for a long period of time. On this day in our village the leader of our locality and seniors are appointed by the community. There is a change in leadership and deciding over who will rule next, how to function the society are made and is important in that manner," Prem Sagar Tharu also told ANI.
Similarly, they celebrated this festival by getting together as a family and friends, get together in a mela, dressing up in the traditional Tharu wear, eating, drinking and making merry.
As part of the ritual, Tharus also select leaders for weddings, farmers and cowherds among others, during the festival. (ANI)