Fashion or culture?

Amrita Shrestha, Samjhana Manandhar and Sharmila Shrestha — BBS IInd Year students at Public Youth Campus, Dhobichaur — have decorated their palms with mehendi. Samjhana and Sharmila have even donned green and yellow bangles on their left wrists.

And a belief has motivated Samjhana to follow the trend without hesitation even though she has to take classes at her college. “There is a religious belief that if unmarried women wear green bangles and mehendi, they will get a good husband.

It is our age-old tradition and following it is like preserving our culture,” Samjhana elaborated. Besides, all her friends have put the bangles and mehendi tempting her to do so too. For Amrita it’s about fashion that prevails throughout a month and she feels good while wearing them. Another student Ambika Das Baniya, studying in Class XI at Nepalaya College, Kalanki shared, “Wearing green and mehendi this month is auspicious where it is believed that your luck will increase. And getting involved in such activities together with friends and family helps to strengthen the bond we share.”

Right or wrong?

While some educational institutions tend to restrict their students from putting accessories like bangles and mehendi, there is no such restriction in Sharmila’s college. “We are studying in the Bachelor’s level and we are not barred from wearing bangles or mehendi. Except for the sound produced by the bangles at times, it won’t disturb anyone. So, there is no need to restrict students from wearing bangles or mehendi,” she opined.

But Nirmal Bajracharya, Lecturer at Nepal Commerce Campus, Minbhawan views it differently. “We should follow our culture, but in the name of culture such distractions should not be brought to colleges. Those wearing bangles in class distract the concentration of all students due to the sound produced.”

That is why “it would be better not to wear bangles or mehendi being a student. It might create indiscipline in class as girls in the class tend to compare their mehendi or bangles. Meanwhile they keep on talking about where to go to put mehendi and where to buy bangles which distracts other students and the entire class is disturbed. It also affects the one who is wearing bangles as bangles come in the way while writing,” Sudan Gautam, a student of Class XII at Ambition College, Baneshwor opined.

However, Ashish Dhital, a Class XII student at Millenium Model College, Chitwan takes it in the positive way. “It is good that young generation is interested to follow our tradition even though they are doing it for fun and fashion. Many of our traditions and culture have disappeared because the young generation is not interested. So I don’t see anything negative about girls following the tradition,” he stated.

Explaining further Bajracharya shared, “It is good that young girls are interested in their culture which helps to preserve the age-old culture. But one should first know why they are following it and its significance. Moreover, before putting on mehendi, it is better to know whether it has any side effects on skin or not.”