KATHMANDU, April 10: Devotees in hordes have started visiting Boudhanath Stupa (temple) since the morning today for Temal Jatra, an important festival of the Tamang community.
The festival is observed on the fourth day of the waxing moon in the Nepali month Chait every year.
The devotees circumambulate the Boudhanath temple and light butter lamps to the memory of their family members and relatives who have died throughout the year.
The festival will last till Tuesday night. Devotees from Kathmandu and surrounding areas have come for the festival.
The festival management committee has estimated that more than 100 thousand devotees will visit the temple this year during the festival.
Although it is not exactly known from when the festival started, it is believed that Rinjen Dorje Bal, the last king of the ancient Timal principality in Kavre, made arrangements for his subjects to visit Bouddhanath temple and light lamps in commemoration of their dead kin wishing for the peace of the departed souls. He also gave state recognition to this festival, a Buddhist scholar Tashi Chhiring Namgel, said.
The Swoyambhu Purana, an ancient scripture, mentions that a certain Bippaswi Buddha came to Kathmandu Valley and planted a lotus flower this same day in ancient times. RSS