Rato Machindranath Rath Jatra begins from Tuesday
Rato Machindranath Rath Jatra, also known as the longest festival of Nepal begins from Tuesday, 10th May 2016.
The idol of Rato Machindranath was installed in the Rath (Chariot) on 7th May, 2016 at Pulchowk.
The chariot or “Bundhyo in Newari language” will be pulled from Tuesday to the different parts of an ancient Patan starting from Pulchowk. And the places where the rath of Rato Machindranath reaches, the people in that particular place celebrates Jatra by offering homage to the God of harvest, cooks different and tasty delicacies.
In the Jatra, the married daughters are invited along with their husbands known as “Nakhatya”. Also around the place of Rath, fair take place. Different business people from different places come to trade in the occassion of Jatra.
The Rath is pulled from Pulchowk to Gabahal and then Mahapal, after then it will be pulled to Hakkha where it will rest for one day. And then it is pulled to Sundara and Okubahal, it also rest one day there.
After that the chariot reaches Lagankhel. Then at Lagankhel, it will rest for couple of days until an appropriete date is figured out according to Nepali astrological calender. After finding appropriate date, the chariot is then taken to the Jawalakhel where it will rest for more days like a month.
The last day of the Jatra is called “Bhoto Jatra” which is observed in Jawalakhel. The Bhoto Jatra is marked as the one of the important occasion and public holiday is marked in this day.
All the people in Kathmandu Valley and also outside the valley come to offer their homage to Rato Machindranath. After the completion of Jatra, the idol of Rato Machindranath is taken to the Bugamati. There is a culture that people of Patan go to Bugamati after four days which is called “Bichayau” in Newari which means to visit and take care. Then Rato Machindranath rest in Bugmati for few months. After that it will returns to the original place called Machindra Bahal or Tabahal in Patan which completes the cycle of the ceremony of Rato Machindranath.