April 13, 2024, Saturday
Nepal 1:37:26 pm

Seventh World Newah Day observed

The Nepal Weekly
April 2, 2024
On Seventh World Newah Day Raja Shakya felicitated at the event oraganised in Patan Durbar premises

Since 2018, the last Saturday of March every year has been celebrated as World Newah Day. This day which is being organized to unite the Newars all over the world. The Newars’ organisations spread all over the world organized the day as a festival gathering at a place with various cultural activities.

The Nepal Chapter of the World Newah Organization held an exclusive event at Patan Durbar premises. ‘World Newah Day for Promotion of Culture’ was the theme of the day.

Senior actor, comedian and singer Madan Krishna Shrestha was the chief guest of the occasion while the event was presided over by WNO Nepal Chapter president Surendra Bhakta Shrestha.

Various cultural programmes including Khdagayogini Charya dance performed by Bishakha Shakya, popular song by Nisha Deshar were performed as part of the event. Dhuva Bahadur Prdhan, Provincial parliament member Raghunath Maharjan, Provincial Prem Bhakta Maharjan, Hariprabha Shrestha Khadgi, chief district officer Tulsi Bahadur Shrestha, Lalipur district chief police offier Shekhar Khanal, chairperson of Newah Dey Daboo Pabitra Bajracharya and others were also among the speakers who spoke on various aspects of culture, literatures and traditions stressing need of preservation and promotion.   

On the occasion senior story writer Raja Shakya, Prof Subarna Shakya, Senior artist Kiran Manandhar, Bodybuilder Maheshwar Maharjan, former AIG of Nepal Police and leading office bearer of Nepal Olympic Committee Dhruva Bahadur Pradhan, nephrologist Dr Pukar Shrestha, hydropower entrepreneur Susan Karmacharya, travel trade and hospitality entrepreneur Ajaya Ratna Sthapit, historian Dr Yogendra Shrestha, cinema and music activist Pawan Joshi, artist Bhintuna Joshi, singer Nisha Deshar and journalist Suresh Kiran Manandhar were honoured for their outstanding contributions. 

The Newarology Matters, a book authored by Daya Ratna Shakya who is also the patron of WNO was also launched during the event.

The Newars are the historical inhabitants of the Nepal Mandala which consists of Nepaa Valley (the Kathmandu valley and distributed settlements around it). The territory ensemble in Nepal is key part of Nepal’s historic heritage and civilization.

The Kathmandu Valley and surrounding territories constituted the former Newar kingdom of the Nepal Mandala. Unlike other common-origin ethnic or caste groups of Nepal, the Newar people are regarded as an example of a nation community with a relic identity, derived from an ethnically-diverse, previously-existing polity. Newar civilization within it consists of various strands of ethnic, racial, caste and religious heterogeneity, as they are the descendants of the diverse group of people that have lived in Nepal Mandala since prehistoric times. The Newars have continued their age-old traditions and practices and pride themselves as the true custodians of the religion, culture and civilisation of Nepal. They are known for their contributions to culture, art, and literatures, trade, agriculture and cuisine. Presently, they consistently rank as the most economically and socially advanced community in Nepal, according to the annual Human Development Index published by UNDP. Newars are ranked the 8th largest ethnic group in Nepal according to the 2021 Nepal census numbering 1,341,363 people constituting 4.6% of the total population.

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The Newar community within it consists of various strands of ethnic, racial, caste and religious heterogeneity, as they are the descendants of the diverse group of people that have lived in Nepal Mandala since prehistoric times. They arrived at different periods and directions eventually merged with the local native population by adopting their language and customs. They garnered religion and culture, which were assimilated with local cultures and gave rise to the current Newar civilisation. Newar rule in Nepal Mandala ended with its conquest by the Gorakha King Prithvi Narayan Shah in 1768.