Indian Army joins Monpa tribe in celebrating Losar Festival

The Indian Army participated in the week-long festivities of the cherished Losar festival alongside the local Monpa Tribe in Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh, as tweeted by SpearCorps.IndianArmy on platform X. The tweet conveyed festive greetings from the GOC and all ranks of Spearcorps, Indian Army, to the Monpa community and the people of Arunachal Pradesh, wishing good health and prosperity to all.

The Monpa Tribe, known for their rich customs and traditions, celebrates the Losar festival with great zeal and fervour in the Tawang and West Kameng regions. This festival, marking the onset of spring in the Northeastern state, begins on the first day of the Lunar calendar, uniting residents of Monpa villages in joyful celebrations.

Leading up to the festival, community members engage in thorough house cleaning and prepare various delicacies, notably the Khow Suey. The Metho ceremony, a significant ritual during the festivities, holds special importance for Tawang, involving sacred chants and the burning of sacred fire torches to dispel evil spirits and invoke blessings. With a history dating back to 500 BC, the Monpas have made Tawang their ancestral home and deeply embrace Himalayan Buddhism. The Indian Army has seamlessly incorporated several rituals of the Monpa Tribe into its culture and actively supports various villages in organising these events.

Losar, the New Year festival observed by Mahayana Buddhist sects in the Himalayan belt including Tibet, Sikkim, Bhutan, Ladakh, and regions of Arunachal Pradesh, is celebrated with grandeur and religious fervor. Preceding the main festivities, people engage in house cleaning and preparations, known as ‘Lama Losar.’ Decorations featuring eight auspicious symbols adorn houses, while traditions like burning pine resin and giving money packets to children symbolize prosperity and good fortune for the coming year.

Chief Minister Pema Khandu also extended wishes on platform X, conveying heartfelt Tashi Deleg and Happy Losar greetings for the Year of the Wood Dragon (Losar 2151), wishing abundant blessings, prosperity, and joy for all, along with everlasting peace in the world.

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