Monday, July 22, 2024

Ghode Jatra: Scare off the Ghost

Ghode Jatra, Nepal’s exciting horse racing festival, to scare off the ghost happens every year in mid-March or early April. It’s a significant day in the Kathmandu Valley, especially at Tundikhel. The military puts on a grand horse parade with lots of cool tricks.

Government leaders, officials, and visitors come to watch, showing that Ghode Jatra. The festival has an incredible story behind it—it celebrates defeating a scary demon named Gurumapa who lived in Tundikhel long ago. Legend says there’s even a tree where Gurumapa used to hang out!

Ghode Jatra: Scare off the Ghost

Traditionally, the day before Ghode Jatra, people sacrifice a buffalo and cook rice near the tree to keep Gurumapa’s spirit happy and protect the city. Long ago, Gurumapa scared kids in Kathmandu, so people rode horses through Tundikhel to scare him away.

Today, the noise of horses’ hooves during Ghode Jatra is believed to scare off Gurumapa’s spirit and keep the city safe. In Patan’s Bal Kumari area, there’s another fun event where a horse gets excited, and someone in traditional clothes rides it. This started as a way to make Patan’s celebration as exciting as Tundikhel’s.

During Ghode Jatra, people also honour the goddess Bhadrakali, asking for her blessings. Ghode Jatra is full of excitement and tradition—it brings together stories from the past, fun performances, and prayers for a bright future.

Appsha Digital

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