Celebrations in Nepal for the Tihar festival, dedicated to animals, were under way yesterday as Hindus as well as some Buddhists joined the five-day festival.

The first day is dedicated to worshipping of the crow, considered the messenger of death or Yamaraj, by the Hindus. The dog is worshipped as the representation of the Hindu god Bhairav on the second day. The third day is dedicated to the cow, considered the representation of the goddess of wealth, Laxmi. The bull is worshipped as the representation of the earth on the fourth day.

The fourth day of the festival was also being marked by the indigenous Newar community as their new year. The calendar is the old administrative calendar of the kingdom of Kathmandu before it was conquered to become a part of unified Nepal.

The festival ends on the fifth day, when brothers are worshipped by sisters, praying for their longevity and

Tihar festival is also known as the festival of lights, the equivalent of Diwali in India. It is a time for ‘spring cleaning’ and people decorate their homes with marigold flowers and lights.





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