Bisket jatra begins in Bhaktapur

Himalayan News Service

Bhaktapur, April 10:

Bisket Jatra, the biggest jatra of Bhaktapur, began with the pulling of the chariot of Lord Bhairavnath on the premises of the five-storied Nyatapola temple today.

Hundreds of locals from either side of the Taumadi area began the jatra at around 5:30 pm by pulling the three-storied pagoda-style chariot. Thousands of people, including foreigners, enjoyed the jatra. Dozens of people from either side pulled the chariot which had priests on board. Some locals on the chariot were trying to hold the large wheels made up of wood through their feet.

According to DSP Raju Manandhar, hundreds of security men were deployed in different parts of Bhaktapur. Most of the shops and houses were closed fearing clashes between the two groups pulling the chariot. “For over 40 years this jatra has witnessed clashes,” said Kumar Chhuka of Lakhachhein, recalling the death of two youths last year. A local, Bimal Dhoubadel, said the chariot was heading towards Dattatreya in the evening. The chariot would be brought to Gahiti of Taumadi after the jatra is over. According to him, the jatra remained peaceful this time.