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Maghe Sakranti being observed

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KATHMANDU — The Maghe or Makar Sankranti, the first day of the month of Magh in the Lunar calendar, is being observed throughout the country today.

On the occasion, Hindus take holy dips in rivers and ponds, worshiping at various temples and savoring various delicacies like ghee, yam, khichadi and sweets like chaku and sweets made of sesame and molasses.

According to the astrological chart, the Makar Sankranti has a special significance as the sun enters into the northern hemisphere from this day onwards.

On this day, the sun moves from the tropic of Sagittarius to tropic of Capricorn. It is believed that the days get longer from today itself.

According to ‘Bhabisya Puran’ and ‘Dharma Sindhu’, religious texts, the devotees will get special blessings and will have robust the body if they observe the festival as per the rituals.

The Newar Community observe the festival by taking ghee, chaku and remembering the departed souls. This festival is called as ‘Ghyo Chaku Sallnhu’ in Newari language. The seniors apply mild-hot edible oil to heads of juniors on this day.

Similarly, Tharus mark the festival by taking a dip in rivers and receiving blessings from elders. Tharus celebrate the festival as Maghi, beginning of the New Year.

A large number of devotees throng Devghat, Barahchhetra, Ridi, Panauti, Dolalghat and Kankai in Nepal and Prayag and Gangasagar in India to take a holy bath and perform Sharaddha.

The festival has significance in view of Ayurveda and medical science also. 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 festival is organized at the Tilmadhav Narayan Temple at Taumadhi Tol, Bhaktapur and Pooja of Deepakankar Buddha is performed.

The government has declared a public holiday to mark the festival today.

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Drinking water shortage hits life at Yasok in Panchthar

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PACHTHAR — A shortage of drinking water at Yasok Bazar, the center of Kummayak Rural Municipality, has thrown the normal life of the locals out of gear.

The problem arose after the local market management committee removed water pipes installed in the bazaar area. Per household here was getting 50 liters of drinking water once in two days before this.

Water scarcity here is not a new occurrence at Yasok which normally remains dry, but the complete disruption in the supply of taps water has paralysed the life, according to local hotelier Keshab Thapa.

There is no natural or artificial water source nearby the area and locals are forced to dependent on the supply by the local government through tractors in a very limited quantity.

The rural municipality has started fetching water from the local Chhorunga stream and distributing it to the locals. Tractors are used to transport stream water to the area.

Earlier, the 650 households at Yasok were using drinking water supplied by the Yasok Deurali Drinking Water Project. Regular supply (once in two days) was too less to meet demand. There is a demand for some 250,000 liters of water at Yasok per day.

According to Yasok Market Management Consumers Committee secretary Mahendra Bahadur Khadka, water pipes were removed (without any alternative arrangements) in course of market management efforts and it will take some more days to restore them and water scarcity is to go for more few days

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