KATHMANDU, JUN 23 – The month-long Rato Machhindranath jatra ended on Sunday with the public display of the black jewel-studded vest known as ‘bhoto’ in Patan. The concluding ceremony was graced by President Ram Baran Yadav, Vice President Paramananda Jha, chiefs of constitutional bodies, top bureaucrats, diplomats and senior security officials along with thousands of people.
Rato Machhindranath jatra Festival it is special interest tour in Nepal , the bhoto was shown thrice to the crowd of devotees and onlookers four days after the chariot of Machhindranath, the Buddhist deity of rain and harvest, reached Patan after being pulled through various localities. The festival has been celebrated since time immemorial to find the ‘real owner’ of the bhoto, and it will continue to be displayed on this particular day until someone comes to claim it with evidences.
Legend has it that the velvet Bhoto was given to a Jyapu farmer by the Karkotaka Naga in reward for curing an eye ailment plaguing his queen. But soon, the Bhoto was stolen. Later, when the farmer was attending the Machhindranath festival at Jawalakhel, he spied someone wearing the same vest. A quarrel ensued between the farmer and the man wearing the vest. Karkotaka Naga was also at the festival in human disguise. He settled the quarrel by presenting the Bhoto to Machhindranath and declaring that whoever can produce evidence of the ownership could have the vest. But as neither the farmer nor the man wearing the vest could produce proof, the bhoto was put on public display at the jatra. And so continues the tradition of displaying the bhoto to the public until its rightful owner is found.
Another legend associated with the Jatra claims that Guru Gorakhnath was not treated well by the locals of Patan when he came seeking alms. The furious yogi trapped all serpents that caused rain under his seat and began meditating. Thus, Patan saw no rain for ages. On the advice of astrologers and priests, the king invited Machhindranath, Gorakhnath’s teacher, to Patan.
After hearing that his teacher was in Patan, the Yogi went to see him, thus freeing the serpents. The serpents then brought rain back rain to Patan.The Jatra then came to symbolise rain.