Friday Mar 31, 2023
Friday Mar 31, 2023

Maghi festival being observed with fanfare

2023 Jan 15, 10:48, Kanchanpur
Representative Image via Pinterest

The people in the Tharu community, mostly from Dang to Kanchanpur in west Nepal, are observing Maghi, the greatest festival of the community. The Tharu community observes this festival with much fanfare and gaiety for five consecutive days.

Maghi festival is celebrated as the New Year by sharing sweet dishes and performing cultural dances and selecting community leaders known as Bhalmansa.

The Sakhiya dance performed with the tune of madal (hand drum) is popular among Tharu community people of all ages for centuries, which demonstrates the costumes, traditions, and folk culture of Tharu, Man Bahadur Chaudhary, a leader of the Tharu community from Kailari of Kailali district said.

Every household is preparing for the celebration of the Maghi festival here, according to Chaudhary. Chaudhary is also a Bhalmansa, a leader of the Tharu community who decides the key issues in the community.

Celebration of the Maghi festival is not likely a personal decision going beyond the decision of Bhalmansa.

The people should manage meat, especially pork, a day before the Maghi festival while the women remain busy cooking local dishes including Jaad and Dhikri.

Dhamar and Dumru dances are also equally popular in the Tharu community during this festival.

Prem Chaudhary, a journalist from the Tharu community, said that the Tharu people have already slaughtered pigs in every house for the celebration of this festival.

Likewise, the married women have visited their maternal home to reunite with their parents, brothers, and relatives to celebrate the Maghi festival, he added.

Furthermore, the selection of Bhalmansa is equally crucial in the village for the Maghi festival. The tradition of Bhalmansa carries great significance since the post has to carry some vital responsibilities in the community. The people here pick Bhalmansa unopposed if an agreement was forged but election and lottery draws are also exercised.

Similarly, community postmen were known as Chirkiya, and Guruwa serve as community health workers and are also selected and perform their jobs under the leadership of Bhalmansa.

In general, these leaders oversee the overall tasks of the community including the protection of the village, development works, irrigation, drinking water supplies, power supplies, and other issues that could surface in the community.

Defiance on the orders of Bhalmansa is considered a violation of social norms in the Tharu community and every individual should abide by the directive of Bhalmansa since this helps maintain discipline and collectivism in the community.



Maghi festival fanfare Tharu community Dang Kanchanpur
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