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Gai Tihar, Laxmi Puja being observed today

Gorkha Post



KATHMANDU — On the third day of the Yamapanchak, Gai Tihar and Laxmi Puja or worship to the Goddess of wealth is being celebrated with various religious rituals throughout the country in accordance with time honored tradition.

Gai (cow) is worshiped in the morning while Laxmi, the Goddess of wealth, is being worshiped in every household in the evening wishing for prosperity to mark the third day of the five-day Tihar festival — also known as the festival of lights — by lighting butter lamps and candles inside and outside of the households to light up the path of Goddess Laxmi in order to welcome her.

All the nooks and corners of the house are illuminated with colorful and decorative lights this evening in the belief that Goddess Laxmi does not visit places that are not properly illuminated, and so to please Goddess Laxmi, people light lamps and spend the whole night in vigil.

After the rituals, women of every household beat the Nanglo (a large straw woven plate) and enter the house from the courtyard to appease the Goddess and by wishing prosperity to enter their homes.

As per the scriptures Sri Sukta hymn is recited after worshiping Laxmi and a coconut, which is a favorite of the Goddess, is offered to her as it is believed this ritual ushers in prosperity.

The night of Laxmi Puja is also a start to the cultural programmes like ‘Deusi’ and ‘Bhailo’, where people, said to be sent by the king Bali, visit different homes singing and dancing for the prosperity.

Girls in groups visit door-to-door in settlements singing the Bhailo songs and the house-owners offer gifts of Selroti, rice grains and money to them.

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26 rhinos die in a year in CNP

Gorkha Post



CHITWAN — Chitwan National Park (CNP) witnessed zero poaching of endangered one-horned rhinoceros in the fiscal year 2074/75. But the death of the rhinos by natural causes has increased recently, as the park has lost a total of 26 rhinos to various causes in this period.

26 rhinos died from various reasons including natural disaster in the period, according to the CNP information officer, Nurendra Aryal.

Four rhinos were killed in flood-related incidents with two caught in a marsh caused by the flooding while two were swept away by flood waters, he informed.

Fighting, delivery complications (in case of some female rhinos) and aging are other reasons behind the deaths of a noticeable number of this endangered wildlife last fiscal year. Three female rhinos succumbed to child delivery complications in this period. They died after failing to give birth to their babies.

The park however has recorded no case of rhino poaching since April 8, 2017.However, the number of rhino deaths due to other reasons was slightly up in the year compared to the previous year, according to the CNP Information Officer Aryal.

This figure is followed by 25 and 15 rhino deaths in previous two fiscal years respectively.

The natural causes led to the death of 24 rhinos in the fiscal year 2073/74 and 15 in 2072/73.

The need of a study was felt to seek potential ways for minimising the death risk among rhinos with their death toll increasing every year, CNP chief conservation officer, Bed Kumar Dhakal said. A squad from the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation has already begun a study to this end.

The CNP latest details mentioned about 605 rhinos here.

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