The Newah Organization of America celebrated Nepal Sambat 1138 “National New Year”, commemorating national hero Sankhadhar Sakhwa on Saturday, November 11, 2017 in Washington DC area. NOA President Mrs. Babita Shrestha and Chief Guest H.E. Nepalese Ambassador to the United States Dr. Arjun Kumar Karki offered khada and flower bouquets on the picture of Shankhadhar Sakhwa the Founder of Nepal Sambat (Nepal Era).
More than two hundred community members came together to enjoy this National New Year Celebration. The program begun with the traditional SUKUNDA Rally, along with live beats of Dhime & Bhusya played by Mr. Medhavi Mohan Ranjit & Mr. Bidwottan Mohan Ranjit and then procession followed with exhibiting portrait of Sankhadhar Sakhwa and New Year banner. NOA founding member spouses and seniors Mrs. Haribaba Kayastha and Mrs. Vidya Pradhan offered the blessing tika and red kokha, along with Mrs. Beena Baidya presented Sagun and Samay Bajee that represents the symbols of good luck and welcome to all guests on their arrival.
NOA Secretary Mr. Divakar Dhaubhadel and Mrs. Mila Shrestha served as Emcees, called the event to order, invited NOA President Mr. Babita Shrestha, Chief Guest H.E. Nepalese Ambassador to the United State Dr. Arjun Kumar Karki, Keynote Speaker Dr. Maheswora Baidya, Special Guest Speaker President of World Newah Organization Mr. Season Shrestha to the dais and conveyed sincere gratitude to all attendee for their valued participation. The Nepal Sambat 1138 celebration program officially began by lighting the Twadewa by Chief Guest His Excellency Dr. Karki facilitated by Mrs. Hari Baba Kayastha and Mrs. Vidya Pradhan, followed by Badge distribution assisted by spouse of executive committee Mrs. Samjhana Shrestha & Mrs. Romee Shrestha, offer Khada offering by spouse of executive committee Mrs. Chhaya Pradhan & Mrs. Sunita Shrestha, and offer Garlands spouse of executive committee Mrs. Meeli Dhaubhadel & Mrs. Mahima Shakya to all distinguished guests at the dais. Likewise Flower and Khada distributed to official guests to tribute honor on the picture of Shankhadhar Sakhwa assisted by Ms. Mala Pradhan.
NOA take opportunity to recognize NOA Founding Members Mr. Beda Pradhan, Mr. Ganesh Lal Kayastha, Mr. Balram Joshi, Mr. Shyam Lal Shrestha, Mr. Ranta Kazee Shakya, Past President Mr. Rajesh Shrestha, Mr. Season Shrestha, Mr. Ram Lal Shrestha, Past Executive Members Mr. Ravi Pradhan, Mr. Jayambu Ranjit and extend gratitude all participants including media representatives Mr. Bijay Thapa, Enepalese, Mr. Khem Bhattachan, DC Nepal, Mr. Govinda Giri Prerana, Viswa Parikrama, Mr. Ram C. Kharel and Mr. Bipin R. Uprety, Sagarmatha TV and also representative from different organizations Mr. Dibya Hada, ANSC, Mr. Ram Malakar, NPPA, Mrs. Vijaya Shah, ANMA, Mrs. Prabha Bhattarai Deuja, ANS, Mrs. Anu Shrestha Onta, BANA and Newah Priest & Scholar Mr. Basav Rajopadhyay.
A moment of silent was observed in honor and memory of untimely demise of Dr. Dina Bangdel, international renowned Art Historian, Scholar Professor VCU-Qatar, close friend and life member of NOA.
NOA 1st Vice President Mr. Pushkar Prajapati has hearty welcomed all the distinguished guests, community members, friends & family and share his intriguing memories of his recent visit including Nepal Sambat 1138 celebration attended by prominent Newah scholars organized by NOA-Nepal Country Coordinator Mr. Kiran Ranjit. Guest Speaker President of World Newah Organization Mr. Shrestha mentioned that celebration is being observed by many Newah Communities residing worldwide in recognizing the significance of the Nepal Sambat and contribution of Legendary Shankdhar Sakhwa in recognizing & celebrating Nepal Sambat in the USA on official level calendar. Keynote Speaker, Dr. Maheswora Baidya had highlighted the origination & importance of Nepal Sambat, historic facts about of Sankhadhar Sakhwa effort towards preservation & promotion of Newah culture, heritage and language. Chief Guest Nepalese Ambassador to the United States H. E. Dr. Karki has mentioned that the Sankhadhar Sakhwa is a national hero who has formed National Era with his remarkable gratitude and he also stated Nepal Sambat as the Rastriya Sambat (National New Year). He had congratulated NOA for working very actively to promote Nepal through Newah Culture around Washington DC area.
NOA President Mrs. Babita Shrestha extended warm greetings on the occasion of Nepal Sambat 1138 and also mentioned that NOA is working together with all other organizations to achieve our goals to preserve & promote as “Unity within the Community” and continue commemorating national hero Sankhadhar Sakhwa since it was established in 2001 and She also cited that Nepal Sambat is belongs to all Nepalese people not only Newah communities. 2nd Vice President Mr. Sushil Lal Shrestha thanked all attendees, including the Chief Guest, Special Guests, Representatives from various Organizations, Volunteers, All Media Representatives, Food Contributors, Cultural Program Performers as well as tireless effort of NOA Executive Committee members and their families. He also thanked to the all Sponsors Dr. Maheswora and Mrs. Beena Baidya, Air Zone Travel, Aero Nepal Travel, UPS Lorton, VA, Cultural Program coordinator Mr. Yagya Man Shakya and Mr. Mahindra Pradhan, Food Coordinator Executive Member Mr. Udaya Shrestha, Registration Treasurer Mr. Rajesh Lal Shrestha, Formal session Emcee Secretary Mr. Divakar Dhaubhadel & Mrs. Mila Shrestha, Culture Program Emcee Mrs. Medina Shakya & Mrs. Lalita Maharjan, Sound system DJ “K&K” Mr. Kijan Man Shakya & Mr. Kohil Man Shakya and Senior Fashion Photographer Mr. Rajiv Shrestha. Likewise NOA also took opportunity to honor Scholar Mr. Dharma Shrestha who has graduated Master’s degree in Nepal Bhasa form Tribhuvan University, Nepal. NOA also take opportunity to extend gratitude to promote biographic book “Maha Ko Ma” of NOA Honorary Member and Renown Artist Mr. Madan Krishna Shrestha represented by their daughter Mrs. Sarana Shrestha.
NOA General Secretary Mr. Mahindra Pradhan has introduced Mrs. Medina Shakya & Mrs. Lalita Maharjan to host the lively cultural program featuring songs and dances by local artists. Program began with ‘Jhigu Kha Nepal Sambat’ live song by NOA Executive Committee Members Mr. Sushil Lal Shrestha, Mr. Mahindra Pradhan & Mrs. Meena Pradhan. The crowd enjoyed the classical dance Bajra Yogini by Senior Performer, Renown Choreographer and Executive Member Mr. Yagya Man Shakya & Ms. Lochani Tara Shakya, Newah Songs by NOA Past President Mr. Rajesh Shrestha, Local Artist Mr. Prabin Tamrakar, Newah Dance of Mrs. Dipika Shrestha Rajbhandary, Various songs of Mr. Sugandha Shrestha and popular Kija Puja & Sunti Newari Song of Mr. Shiva Raj Joshi.
Continuing NOA debut and on going 2nd year presentation of Dabu Pyakha (Newah Drama) “Whanta & Pyanta” Written & Composed by Mr. Ram Lal Shrestha, Direction and performed by Dr. Roshan Lal Shrestha, Presented by General Secretary Mr. Mahindra Pradhan, and performed by Secretary Mr. Divakar Dhaubhadel, Mr. Anil Ranjit, Mr. Jayambu Ranjit, 2nd Vice President Mr. Sushil Lal Shrestha, Mrs. Mila Shrestha, Mr. Jim Shrestha, Ms. Mala Pradhan including melodious songs by famous pop singers Ms. Sarishma Amatya and Mr. Sanjeep Pradhan, culture program ended with the memorable entertainment nights.
Authentic traditional delicious home cooked Newah dinner buffet Bhoye was served to all participants. NOA extends New Year’s greeting to all Nepalese around the world and shares its best wishes for Nepal Sambat 1138, Nepal Era!!