Swasthani Bratakatha, a month-long festival devoted to Hindu goddess Swasthani that began on Poush Shuklapurnima, is coming to a close today.
The Hindus observe the festival, which consists of fasting and recitation of Swasthani script, from the full moon day of one month until the full moon day of the next month. Swasthani Bratakatha
Devotees will break their fast today in the afternoon after doing puja (prayer) and will stay up all night before making gifts in holy rivers on Thursday, according to the rites. Swasthani Bratakatha
Nepali Hindus celebrate the event by worshiping Goddess Swasthani, fasting, and reading the sacred storybook Swasthani, which mostly tells the legends of Goddess Swasthani, God Shiva, and other deities.
Throughout the month, devotees take a holy bath, wear clean clothes, cut their nails, and do worship rites in the morning, after which they read out the stories and eat austere meals in the afternoon.
Fasting and intensive adoration are also practiced by devotees during this time to appease Goddess Swasthani.
It is thought that married women who fast would be blessed with long lives for their husbands, while unmarried women will be blessed with acceptable marriage partners.
During the one-month period, women wear red clothing and bangles since it is thought that the color red gives them good luck.
Swasthani rituals are performed on the banks of rivers in Hindu shrines around the country, notably the Shalinadi in Shankhu, on the northeast outskirts of Kathmandu Valley.