Pokhara reviving Bagh Jatra festival after a hiatus of 23 years

Bijay Nepal 02 Sep 2023
Pokhara reviving Bagh Jatra festival after a hiatus of 23 years File Photo

POKHARA: Jawaharlal Shrestha of Pokhara is currently occupied with an important task. The locals of Pokhara are working actively to resurrect the iconic Bagh Jatra festival, which translates to the ‘Tiger’s Festival’, after a hiatus of 23 years, and Shrestha is leading these efforts.

While Pokhara has been regularly organizing cultural and religious processions such as Bhairavjatra, Gaijatra, and Maghejatra, the three-day Bagh Jatra was discontinued due to various reasons two decades ago. Shrestha and his team are now gearing up to organize this event at different locations in Pokhara from September 4-7.

The Mohariya locality in Pokhara last organized Bagh Jatra festival 23 years ago. This time, the festival is being organized jointly by the Pokhara Metropolitan City and Newa Khala, Kaski.

Shrestha said that Bagh Jatra festival is not limited to the Newar community; it welcomes participants from various ethnicities.

In the previous year, the Newar community in Pokhara organized the Barha Bhairav festival which takes place every six years and has a history of 250 years. Shrestha said that Bagh Jatra also holds equal significance.

According to the organizers, Pokhara Mayor Dhanraj Acharya, the Ward Office, Newa Khala Kaski, and several affiliated organizations are working collaboratively to host the festival. The ceremonial king and queen of Mustang and the leader of the Magar community, are set to attend the Bagh Jatra celebration in Pokhara. The Nepali Army is providing surplus uniforms for the participants. Likewise, the organizers have invited a team of 50 traditional musicians from Bhaktapur to participate in the festival.

Bagh Jatra narrates the story of a tiger’s incursion into human settlements and the king’s efforts to control it. Participants of the festival will enact different roles accompanied by musical performances. The procession will commence from Newa Chhen, traverse various thoroughfares in Pokhara over the first two days, and conclude at the Pokhara Stadium on September 7 with a grand performance by traditional musicians.

Ashok Palikhe, Chairman of Newa Khala, Kaski, underscored the need to link the festival with tourism promotion.

Published On: 02 Sep 2023


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *