(Updated) Rato Machhindranath Jatra postponed again

File: The Rato Machhindranath chariot being pulled by the devotees at Kumaripati, on Monday, May 22, 2017. The chariot is pulled from Lagankhel to Jawalakhel where it will be kept till Bhoto Dekhaune Jatra.

Kathmandu, July 22

The Rato Machhindranath Jatra scheduled to kick off this Saturday has been postponed again citing the Covid-19 infection risks.

Though an astrologer had fixed the auspicious date and time to start the annual festival, which should have been held in April, to begin this Saturday, Guthi Sansthan, a government authority formed to support such festivals, decided to postpone it again as the government has not allowed such festivals despite ending the lockdown.


Rato Machhindranath Jatra to start this Saturday

Kathmandu, July 22

Religious authorities of Lalitpur have decided to start the Rato Machhindranath Jatra this Saturday.

The 15-day festival should have taken place in April but was postponed citing growing Covid-19 fears. The authorities had then decided to postpone the festival until the end of the lockdown. With the government announcing the end of the lockdown yesterday, the jatra will take place from this Saturday, according to Lakshan Rajopadhyaya, the priest of Patan Taleju Temple.

The idol of Rato Machhindranath will be put on the chariot (rath) between 12:10 pm and 12:25 pm that day whereas the chariot’s journey will also begin the same day, according to Rajopadhyaya. Astrologer Kirti Madan Joshi, a member of the Nepal Panchanga Nirnayak Samiti, fixed the timing for the festival.

The annual festival will last for 15 days.

Before this, Bisket Jatra and Jibro Chhedne Jatra of Bhaktapur and Seto Machhindranath Jatra of Kathmandu have also been postponed for this year due to the Covid-19 crisis. Locals of Ason in Kathmandu also did not celebrate the annual Paachahre festival in March.

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