Kathmandu, September 11
Kathmandu Metropolitan City is all set to officially welcome 48 special foreign guests to observe Indra Jatra, an eight-day long festival, for the first time. The jatra began yesterday upon the erection of a sacred wooden pole in Hanumandhoka.
Speaking at an event organised here today, mayor of KMC, Bidya Sundar Shakya said five mayors of foreign cities were among special guests invited to attend the longest festival of the country.
He said KMC had also formed Indra Jatra Management Committee to make the festival a success. “KMC will bear the costs for the accommodation of the invitees.
We have allocated one million rupees for this purpose. Participation of foreign guests in the festival is expected to boost the Visit Nepal-2020 campaign,” he said.
Foreign guests are scheduled to attend special ceremonies as part of the jatra to be held on Friday. They will also visit Chandragiri Hills, Swoyambhunath Stupa, Pashupatinath and other religious and heritage sites.
Kathmandu Metropolitan City confirmed that mayors of various metropolitan cities and officials from countries, including the USA, China, India, Japan, Bangladesh and Bhutan will be joining the festival. Kathmandu Metropolitan City has sister metropolitan cities in those countries. Mayor Shakya said the event will strengthen KMC’s relationship with sister cities and help promote Nepali culture and festivities in the world. Indra Jatra is celebrated annually with much fanfare by worshipping lord Indra, the Hindu god of rain.
A version of this article appears in print on September 12, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.