Amar Thapa, who lives in the village of Jyamdi in Kavrey district, Nepal, plays a shehnai, a popular traditional instrument in that nation, to wish candidates good luck in the parliamentary election and provincial election to be held Nov. 26 and Dec. 7, respectively. The shehnai is mainly used on auspicious occasions like weddings, religious rituals and elections, and to call villagers to public gatherings.
In the capital city of Kathmandu, contract-based police hired by Nepal’s government train for duty during the Parliament and provincial elections on Nov. 26 and Dec. 7, respectively. Government police officers held the training for the contract-based police, who will be deployed in the field during the elections.
Naurata Dhungana (left), 32, and Harikala Rawal, 45, thresh rice, separating grain from stalks, by beating it against a bench. They’re working in Satti, a community in Nepal’s Kailali district, over 600 kilometers (over 400 miles) from Kathmandu, the capital. The rice, planted in July, is stored as a yearlong staple to last until the next harvest in October or November.
Hindu priest Udhav Man Karmacharya performs puja, or an act of worship, on the Taleju goddess shrine in Hanuman Dhoka, a royal palace complex in Kathmandu, Nepal’s capital. Once a year, the shrine is brought to the Guhyeshwari Temple for puja before it returns to the Taleju Temple in Hanuman Dhoka.
Sarita Khanal and her husband, Padam Chetri, with help from Hindu priest Baikuntha Dhakal (right), perform a puja to worship the god Vishnu for the Hindu holiday Haribodhini Ekadashi in Kathmandu, Nepal. The worship includes a fast that Hindus believe will wipe away sins committed in previous lives.
During the Chhath Puja festival on Oct. 26 in Kamal Pokhari, a neighborhood in the heart of Kathmandu, Nepal, Gita Budhathoki (center), 55, prayed to Surya, the Hindu sun god, by putting an offering of mixed flour and coloring into the Kamal Pokhari pond. This ancient Hindu festival is traditionally observed by four days of prayer and thanks to the sun god and his sister, Chhathi Maiya, to promote well-being and the development and prosperity of humankind.
Ani Chokyi (right), a female monk, recites prayers with other Buddhist monks and devotees during the chöd puja, a monthly worship gathering at the Padma Varna Mahayan Bihar, a monastery in Jyatha Bahal, an area in Patan, Nepal. The devotees use instruments like a damaru drum and a bell as they recite from the Buddhist prayer book.
Laxmi Chaudhary, 20, holds her 1-year-old child while her 3-year-old child watches as she collects water in Bardiya District, Nepal. In Bardiya’s indigenous Tharu community, in the Terai plains, some family members cook food and bring it to others who work in the fields.
Performers danced in a parade during the Gaijatra festival in Kathmandu, Nepal’s capital, on Aug. 8. The Hindu festival honors those who have died in the past year. The festivities coincided with this year’s Pride parade, organized by LGBT rights nonprofit Blue Diamond Society, to also memorialize recently deceased members of the LGBT community.
Farmers harvest paddy seeds from their land in Gulariya, a municipality in Nepal’s Bardiya district. During the off-season, the seeds are sold to farmers in the Terai lowlands, where rice is the main crop.
Voters in Nepal’s Mandandeupur municipality attend a celebration organized by the Nepali Congress party after its panel won the local election. In May, local elections were held for the first time in 20 years, and this was the first election for Nepal under its new constitution.
Men from South India perform a form of worship called puja at Muktinath, a holy pilgrimage site for Hindus and Buddhists in Mustang, Nepal. Devotees come to Muktinath to do different types of pujas, and these three are performing sharada, in which they chant prayers and offer water and food to their deceased family members.
Pasang Gurung, 49, uses a hand loom to weave traditional clothes and accessories for herself and her family in Mustang, a district in northwestern Nepal. Hand looms are common in Mustang villages, and some residents sell their products to foreign tourists for extra income.
Chimmi Rinzing Gurung, 50, and his horses travel around Lo Manthang village in Upper Mustang, a region in northwestern Nepal. Gurung charges tourists 1,500 Nepalese rupees (about $15) for a round-trip horseback ride to their destination, where he tends to the horses while the tourists go sightseeing.
A sadhu, a Hindu who has renounced the worldly life, sits outside the Muktinath Temple, waiting to receive alms from the pilgrims who came to visit the holy site in Mustang, Nepal. Sadhus spend their time traveling to different Hindu temples and holy sites, and Muktinath is one of the oldest Hindu temples.
On the outskirts of Lo Manthang, a village in Upper Mustang, Yanzen Gurung hangs a khada, a ceremonial scarf, as an offering to the gods that protect her maternal homeland. She was about to return to Kathmandu, where she lives with her husband. People in the Upper Mustang region believe the gods protect the lands and the hills, and they offer prayers and khadas to them and hang Buddhist prayer flags.
Ram Sunar, 26, casts his vote in the local election in Ward 6 of Birendranagar, a city in the Surkhet district of Nepal. Despite the death of their mother the previous day, Sunar and his brother (not pictured) came out on May 14 to vote in the first local elections in Nepal in 20 years.
Rajdev Yadav, 29, lays incense sticks out to dry in the sun while working at the Bodhisattvas in Action (BIA) Incense Institute in Kathmandu, Nepal. The BIA Foundation comprises eight different institutions run by people with disabilities. Yadav, who is missing a leg, has been working for the BIA Incense Institute for two years. The incense sticks are used in Hindu and Buddhist worship.
Martial artists gather at a competition organized by the Nepal Budo Kai Do Full Contact Association in Kathmandu, Nepal’s capital. Kaji Man Shrestha, the chairman of the March event, says it was important to hold the competition in a public place to promote awareness about the sport.