Bhai Tika fest to kick off on joyous note

Kathmandu, November 2:

Sisters throughout the kingdom will offer Tika’ to their brothers tomorrow wishing them happiness, long life and prosperity on the occasion of Bhai Tika.

The auspicious hour tomorrow for offering tika is between 12:15 pm to 1:00 pm, Chairman of the Panchang Nirnayak Samiti Dr Madhav Bhattarai said.

On this day of the Tihar festival, brothers who have sisters are seated at a specially anointed place around which a trail of mustard oil is drawn.

The sisters then offer the brothers tika and garlands of Dubo and Makhamali flowers. The occasion commemorates a legendary event in which a sister won a boon from Yama, the deity of death, that her brother would not die until the mustard oil dried up and the garlands of Dubo and Makhamali had faded.

After placing saptarangi tika on the foreheads of their brothers, the sisters offer them a treat consisting mainly of sweets, walnut, spices and Sel roti, a special kind of white-flour bread fried in oil. Brothers also offer their sisters tika in return, wish them happiness and good luck, and give them money and presents.

The Bhai tika tradition is so strong in Nepali society that even those who have no brothers or sisters of their own receive tika from others whom they regard as brothers and sisters.

Those who have no brothers and sisters as well as people in general also visit the temple in the centre of local Rani Pokhari and offer worship. The temple opens to the public only this day of the year.