Worshiping the Hindu Goddess Saraswati, the festival of Shree Panchami is observed by the Hindu community throughout Nepal
Shree Panchami is celebrated across the country by worshipping Saraswati, ‘Goddess of Learning, Wisdom, Knowledge and Arts’. Also known as Basanta Panchami because it marks the end of winter and the beginning of spring.
Goddess Saraswati is most commonly depicted as a four- armed female deity riding on a white swan. On each of her right hand and the left hand she holds a musical instrument called Vina, a book, and a chain of prayer beads. She is the supreme authority of art, music, wisdom, literacy and numeration.
On this day, Nepalis flock various temples dedicated to Saraswati. Similarly, Shree Panchami or Basanta Panchami is the most auspicious day of the year. So, auspicious ceremonies such as weddings, Bratabandha (adulthood ceremony of boys), Ihi (mock-marriage of girls to wood apple) are conducted on this day. On any other day, the priest would have to set an auspicious time for ceremonies to commence but the day of Shree Panchami is an exception.
Basanta Panchami or Shree Panchami is also considered an optimistic day for businessmen, craftsmen and artisans. Some even wait for this day to initiate their new start-up business believing the day ensures them a success. Traditionally, parents also teach the alphabet to their children on this day.
PC: Skanda Gautam