Nepal Sambat 1142, which is celebrated every year on the day of Kartik Shukla Pratipada, is being celebrated today by organizing various programs across the country.
This Samvat is currently celebrated by the Newar community as the New Year.
Shankhadhar Sakhwa, a national luminary, started the Nepal Sambat in 937 BS (880 AD) by redeeming the debts of the poor people. Former Vice-Chancellor of Lumbini Buddhist University Dr. Triratna Manandhar informed that the Nepal Samvat has been recognized as a national Samvat till the reign of Prithvi Narayan Shah. “Nepal Sambat, which started from the reign of King Raghavdev of Lichhavi period, continued as the original Samvat till the reign of Prithvi Narayan Shah. Before the Lichhavi period, Saka Samvat was in vogue.
After the establishment of democracy in 2007 BS, a campaign was launched for national recognition of Nepal Samvat. Nepal Sambat is celebrated as New Year in Kathmandu, Lalitpur, Bhaktapur, Banepa, Dhulikhel, Barhabise, Dolakha, and other places where the Newar community is in the majority.
Sakhwa was declared a national hero by the then Prime Minister Krishna Prasad Bhattarai on New Year’s Day 2056 BS, highly appreciating the work done by the poor people in redeeming their debts, presenting an excellent example of social service and running a fundamental year in Nepal.
In 2065 BS, Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda announced that Nepal Samvat would get national recognition. There is still a tradition in Kathmandu to close the book account on the day of Krishna Aunsi and start a new book account on the day of Kartik Shukla Pratipada.
Maha (self) worship
Today, in the Newar community, Maha (self) worship is also performed. Today, on the day of Kartik Shukla Pratipada, the Newar community celebrates their self-worship.
Prof. Dr. Ram Chandra Gautam, a theologian and former chairman of the Nepal Panchang Judging Committee, says that the tradition of self-worship is classical as the human soul is the greatest and most important. There is a religious belief that if one can keep oneself satisfied and happy, even the gods and goddesses will be happy to bless and take life.