The Swasthani Brata Katha Festival in Nepal

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A devotee takes a holy bath in River Saali in Sankhu on the first day of Swasthani Brata Katha festival in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. During the month long festival, devotees recite one chapter of a Hindu tale daily from the 31-chapter sacred Swasthani Brata Katha book that is dedicated to God Madhavnarayan and Goddess Swasthani, alongside various other gods and goddess and the miraculous feats performed by them. The devotees also go on pilgrimages to various temples, perform religious rituals, take a holy bath in the rivers and fast for a month, especially among women who believe fasting helps in their family’s well-being or in getting them a good husband. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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Devotees cross the Saali River during the first day of the Swasthani Brata Katha festival near Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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Devotees offer prayers as they submerge themselves in the river before taking a holy bath at Saali River during the first day of the Swasthani Brata Katha festival at Sankhu in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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A Hindu holy man, or “Sadhu”, sits near the fire to keep himself warm on the first day of the Swasthani Brata Katha festival in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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Devotees return after taking a holy bath at the Saali River on the first day of the Swasthani Brata Katha festival at Sankhu in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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A devotee wearing prayer beads returns after taking a holy bath at the Saali River on the first day of the Swasthani Brata Katha festival at Sankhu in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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A devotee takes a holy bath in the River Saali in Sankhu on the first day of Swasthani Brata Katha festival in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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Devotees stand on the bank of River Saali in Sankhu during the first day of Swasthani Brata Katha festival in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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A Hindu holy man holds the holy Swasthani Brata Katha as he recites verses from the book at the bank of River Saali in Sankhu on the first day of Swasthani Brata Katha festival in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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A boy takes a holy bath in the River Saali in Sankhu on the first day of Swasthani Brata Katha festival in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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A devotee takes a holy bath in River Saali in Sankhu on the first day of Swasthani Brata Katha festival in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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Devotees stand next to a fire after taking a holy bath in Saali River on the first day of the Swasthani Brata Katha festival at Sankhu in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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A devotee gets dressed after taking a holy bath in River Saali in Sankhu on the first day of Swasthani Brata Katha festival in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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The hand of a devotee is silhouetted as she sits beside a fire to keep warm before taking a holy bath in Saali River on the first day of the Swasthani Brata Katha festival at Sankhu in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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Hindu women sit around fires as they keep warm before taking holy baths at Saali River during the first day of the Swasthani Brata Katha festival at Sankhu in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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A Hindu holy man or “Sadhu” sits near a fire to keep himself warm on the first day of Swasthani Brata Katha festival in Kathmandu January 5, 2015. (Photo by Navesh Chitrakar/Reuters)

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Nepalese women devotees sit around a bonfire to warm themselves before they take holy deep in Salinadi River during the first day of month long Swasthani Bratakatha festiva in Sankhu, on the outskirts of Katmandu, Monday, January 5, 2015. During this month-long festival, devotees recite Holy Scriptures dedicated to Hindu goddess Swasthani and Lord Shiva. Unmarried women pray to have a good husband while those married pray for the longevity of their husbands by observing a month-long fast. (Photo by Niranjan Shrestha/AP Photo)

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