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Masked dancers mark Hindu festival in Nepal

Masked dancers mark Hindu festival in Nepal

Performers masked as various Hindu deities dance to celebrate Naradevi Swetkali Parba, a festival organised every 12 years in Nepal's capital Kathmandu, in the belief it will help overcome evil and establish peace and security.

The festival honours Goddess Naradevi, whose name translates to the goddess of human beings.

During the festival, nineteen masked dancers representing various gods and goddesses take to the streets in colourful clothes and accessories as traditional music is played. The dancers illustrate various mythological stories of the deities.

The festival is celebrated by the Newar community, indigenous to the Kathmandu valley, and was begun during the reign of the Malla dynasty who ruled the Kathmandu valley between the 13th and 18th centuries.