The Nepalese community in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada observed Pahachare (Gode Jatra), Janabaha Dyah (Seto Machindra Nath) Jatra and Biska (Bisket) Jatra amidst a cultural event at Lansdowne Community Hall on Saturday April 23, 2016. The cultural event was organized by Newa Cultural Society of Alberta (NCSA).
Welcoming the guests and participants at the cultural event, Dr. Hemanta Joshi, President of NCSA, briefly spoke about the importance of observing cultural festivals. Dr. Joshi highlighted on NCSA’s program and activities in promoting, preserving and maintaining Newa culture, traditions and identity in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Dr. Joshi also spoke about NCSA’s language, music and dance heritage project to be started in June. According to Dr. Joshi, NCSA was established in April 22, 2013 under the Societies Act of Alberta to practice, promote, and preserve Newa language, literature, arts, culture, and traditions in Edmonton, Canada.
In the cultural event, worship of deities such as Mahadev, Seto Machindra Nath, Bhairav and Bhadrakali as well as Lord Ganesh, the god of the beginnings, was performed by Mrs. Bejuna Joshi, senior member of the Newa community in Edmonton.
Mr. Tri Prasad Dhoubhadel, Founding Member of NCSA, briefly highlighted on story behind celebrating Biska Jatra in Bhaktapur. Mr. Rameshwar Adhikari, President of Nepalese Canadian Society of Edmonton (NECASE), expressed his satisfaction being part of the celebration of important cultural festivals. He thanked the NCSA team and volunteers for their efforts in practicing, promoting and maintaining Newa culture and traditions in Edmonton.
In the cultural event, participants were engaged and entertained with cultural quiz related to Pahachare, Janabaha Dyah Jatra, and Biska Jatra festivals as well as interesting facts about NCSA. Participants who answered the questions correctly in the quiz received gift cards as reward. Mrs. Bejuna Joshi and Dr. Pawan Nyachhyon, Vice President of NCSA, conducted the quiz. Dr. Kishor Shrestha, Secretary of NCSA, thanked all the participants for their participation and cooperation in organizing the cultural event. Dr. Pawan Nyachhyon was the MC in the cultural event.
At the end of the cultural event, a delicious Samay Bajee (an ethnic feast) prepared by the members of the community was served to all the participants. The Samay Bajee, comprised of varieties of festival related food items including auspicious Khen Sagan [ritual food comprised of deep-fried egg, Woo (a deep fried pancake made from ground black lentil), small fried whole fish, steamed and fried pieces of meat, and a small bowl of Khaye (a mixture of yogurt, water, cumin powder, oil, and salt) as substitute for Ayela (a Newa whisky)] as divine blessings for good luck, prosperity, healthy, and longevity.