Gangtok: Pang Lhabsol, a festival unique to Sikkim that commemorates the consecration of Mount Khangchendzonga as the guardian deity, was celebrated in a grand manner across the Himalayan state on Friday.
Devotees thronged monasteries wearing traditional attire to offer prayers to the holy mountain.
However, the organising committee at the Tsuklakhang Monastery (palace complex) came up with a unique and eye-opening gesture to make the festival a zero-waste affair this year.
To do this, the organising committee partnered with SECURE Himalaya project asking the devotees not to bring offerings wrapped in plastic to the monastery.
Lhendup Dorjee Bhutia, an organiser from the Tsuklakhang Trust, highlighted the importance of the festival. He further expressed his happiness to see the youth participate in the ‘pangtoed’ or warrior dance which shows their love and concern for their culture & tradition.
Pang means ‘to witness’ and apart from paying homage, it also commemorates the treaty of brotherhood among Lepchas and Bhutias. It signifies the unity of the Sikkimese. The festival is celebrated on the 15th day of the seventh month of the Tibetan calendar corresponding to late August/early September of the Gregorian calendar.
The ‘chaams’, which are part of this festival, are unique and the spectacular Pangtoed or warrior dance was choreographed by the third Chogyal Chador Namgyal, which is said to have appeared to him in a vision.