This year’s Dasain was a subdued affair as it coincided with Covid-19 spreading like wildfire across Nepal, and especially in Kathmandu Valley. It now looks like Tihar, which this year falls on 13-16 November will also be the same.
These annual five-day celebrations will kick off from 13 November with Kag Tihar when crows are worshipped as the vehicle for Yamaraj, the god of death. On the other days, it will be the turn of the dogs to be revered, then the cow. The Newa community then marks its new year and the worship of self, Mha Puja.
With the coronavirus still spreading, the daily death toll now hitting 30 per day, most families are in a dilemma about the rituals, which requires brothers and sisters, for instance to pay their respects to each other on Bhai Tika. Most will be doing it wearing masks, keeping distance in well-ventilated rooms or outdoors.