Nepal's former living goddess looks forward to lead a normal life

Nepal

Submitted by Rashmi on Sat, 2016-03-26 15:18 Bhaktapur (Nepal): Bidding farewell to the life of a living goddess, Kumari of Bhaktapur, Junisha Shakya, looks forward to leading a normal life and devoting more time to her studies and school activities. Shakya, who turns 10 in two weeks, was relieved of her duty after her Bel Bibaha, a Newari tradition where a young girl is married to bel (wood apple) which represents god Vishnu, on Friday. She was picked the Kumari of Bhaktapur, also known as Ekantakumari, at the age of seven. "I enjoyed my time as a goddess and will forever cherish those three and half years. I will now spend more time on my studies and school activities," the Kathmandu post quoted her as saying. Junisha is currently a fourth grader at the Bhaktapur-based school. Though Junisha would automatically be relieved of her duty after turning 10, her parents decided an early exit by performing their daughter's Bel Bibaha citing the time to be auspicious. Her family is working on making her transition to leading a normal life as easy as possible. "Life as a normal girl after enjoying the status of a goddess will need some adjustment and we want to make that transition smooth," said Junisha's father Juju Ratna Shaky said. Meanwhile, the search for Junisha's successor has begun and only be selected after a girl matches all the qualities with the goddess Taleju. During the search, these young girls are to be devoid of any marks in their body and never been hurt or seriously ill. Kumari, incarnation of Taleju, is selected from Shakya and Bajracharya clans of the Newar community. (ANI)