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Ghode Jatra being observed

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KATHMANDU — The annual festival of Ghode Jatra, the Horse Racing Day, which falls on the Nepali month of Chaitra, is being celebrated in the Kathmandu valley today.

The Ghode Jatra is known as the oldest festival celebrated in the country’s cultural hub of Kathmandu valley.

The festival was being celebrated annually as per a mythology which relates the genesis of the festival after the death of a demon named Tundi.

Legend has it that the demon who lived on a meadow, which is now Tundikhel, used to instigate terror among the Kathmandu denizens. After his death people rejoiced by dancing on his body by riding horses. It is a widely circulated belief that the parade of horses at Tundikhel keeps the demon’s spirit away. The faster the horses run the better Tundi’s spirit is dispelled.

As per another legend, the Ghode Jatra is held to mark the start of New Year. The festival is celebrated on the day of Krishna Aunsi, as per the lunar calendar, which is a day before the Chaitra Shukla Pratipada and this day is taken as the start of the New Year.

The horse parade known religiously as Aswa Yatra is held to welcome the New Year. The day before Ghode Jatra is also known as Pichas Chaturdarshi, as per lunar calendar.

On the day, Nepal Army showcases a grade parade of its cavalry might with various games involving horses. Likewise, another event takes place at the adjacent city of Patan where a horse is intoxicated and an equally drunk person clad in traditional Newari attire rides it.

The Goddess Bhadrakali known as Lumarhi Devi for the Newar community is worshiped on this day.

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NC consults experts on govt’s policies and programs

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KATHMANDU — The main opposition party, Nepali Congress, has taken suggestions from experts regarding the government’s policies and programs.

A meeting of the Nepali Congress parliamentary party convened at the parliamentary party’s office in Singha Durbar today consulted with the economists and former bureaucrats on the policies and programs of the government.

The government presented its policies and programs for the fiscal year 2018/19 in the Federal Parliament on Monday.

Deliberations will be held on the policies and programs in the House of Representatives and the National Assembly from Wednesday.

NC leader Dilendra Prasad Badoo, talking to the National News Agency, RSS, said that the meeting reviewed the government’s policies and programs and also discussed on issues the party would speak on in parliament.

Before this, the Nepali Congress had decided to put its views in parliament by forming thematic committees.

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