Indra Jatra, the biggest festival of Kathmandu Valley dedicated to god of rain Indra, formally began today with the erection of a sacred wooden pole (lingo) at Hanumandhoka in Basantapur Darbar Square.
The festival lasts for eight days with singing, mask dancing and rejoicing along with other rituals. It is also celebrated in Kavre and Dolakha districts.
Indra Jatra festival falls on the fourth day of the waxing moon in the month of Bhadra as per the lunar calendar.
Legends said that the Indra Jatra festival is observed to celebrate the victory of the gods over the demons to release Jayanta, the son of Lord Indra.
Indra, the god of rain, is worshiped in this festival primarily celebrated by the Newar communities following both Hinduism and Buddhism.