Prithvi Narayan Shah in 1770 entered Kathmandu on the day of Indra Jatra, and is said to have won over the local population by kneeling at the feet of the Kumari.
The Kumari House courtyard bears the most exotic of all wood carvings in the area, and was built in 1757 during the reign of king Jaya Prakash Malla, the last Malla king, who was deposed by the invading army of Prithvi Narayan.
History books tell us that Jaya Prakash Malla was pulling the Kumari chariot himself, and enjoying every bit of it. But by the time the chariot reached the Lagan neighbourhood, Gorkha forces had captured his palace at Hanuman Dhoka. He then fled across the swollen Bagmati river to seek refuge in the neighbouring kingdom of Patan.
Indra Jatra is marked with much enthusiasm and devotion by both Hindus and Buddhists in the Kathmandu Valley, and celebrated for eight days by singing, dancing, feasting and rejoicing.
People throng excitedly to see the chariot and to watch the ritual dances — featuring masked demons, gods and goddesses. Kathmandu’s famous Lakhey dancers are also part of the chariot procession.
Let the jatra begin
Boy gods of Kathmandu, Sahina Shrestha