Nepal President, PM under fire for Vijayadashami celebrations
Nepal President Bidhya Devi Bhandari faced criticism after some pictures of the head of state putting ‘tika’ on Vijayadashami day on the foreheads of many people, including senior government officials who were seen kneeling down in front of her, went viral on social media.
On Vijayadashami, one of the rituals include elders blessing others by putting a ‘tika’ on their forehead. Many people visited Bhandari at her house on the day. Retired Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Gopal Prasad Parajuli knelt down on the carpet as the President, who was sitting on a high chair, applied ‘tika’ on him. A retired Army Chief also took ‘tika’ from Bhandari by squatting on the floor in front of her.
“Why should the head of a secular state maintain the erstwhile royal tradition and treat people in high places and ordinary people as subjects,” asked a senior bureaucrat.
PM K P Oli, also opened his official residence to the general public for them to get ‘tika’ on Vijayadashami day.
“Just because he is in power, his doing it in a feudal manner is neither in conformity with the values of democracy or Hindu tradition,” said former PM Baburam Bhattarai.