Newa culture is very rich in pageantry and ritual throughout the year. Many festivals are tied to Hindu holidays, Buddha’s birth and the harvest cycle. The important Newa festivals are Mha Puja , celebrated in the occasion of the New year, during the festival of Tihar as per local calendar (Nepal Sambat), Bisket Jatra celebrated on the first of Baisakh and many more. One of the important festival celebrated by Newa people is Gunhu Punhi. During this nine-day festival, Newa men and women drink a bowl of sprouted mixed cereals and offer food to frogs in the farmers’ fields. On the second day, Sā Pāru (Gai Jatra), people who have lost a family member in the past year dress up as cows or anything comical and parade through town, a ritual carried by a king to show his queen that not only his son died but other people die too. The last day of Gunhu Punhi is Krishnastami, birthday of lord Krishna, an incarnation of lord Vishnu.
Yanyā Punhi (Indra Jatra) is a holiday related to Hindu god king of heaven, Indra. The festival begins with the carnival-like erection of Yosin, a ceremonial pole, accompanied by the rare display of the deity Aakash Bhairab, represented by a massive mask spouting beer and liquor. Households throughout Kathmandu display images and sculptures of Indra and Bhairab only at this time of year. Finally, the Kumari, or virgin goddess (living goddess), leaves the seclusion of her temple in a palanquin and leads a procession through the streets of Kathmandu to thank Indra the rain god. And there is an occasion in Tihar where people worship themselves know as Mha Puja(self-worship) in which people eat good food and wear good clothes, this day is also the Newa new year or Nepal Sambhat in which a rally takes place where people go around town in motorcycles, busses and huge celebration. It is another emerging rituals that even young people take it deep.
Many rituals are related to the stages of life stages from birth, first rice-feeding, childhood, puberty, marriage, seniority and death. The complexity and all-encompassing nature of these rituals cannot be exaggerated. For instance, Newa girls undergo a Bahra ceremony when they reach menarche. Because menstruation is considered ritually impure, girls undergo ritual confinement for 12 days. Girls are separated from all males and from sunlight for 12 days while they are doted upon by female relatives. On 12th day the girl must pay homage to the sun.
Should a Newa man or women live long enough, there are five rituals, known as Janku,—which can be confusing, as the first rice feeding ceremony is referred to as Janku as well—performed between the age of 77 and 106. These at the age 77 years, 7 months, 7 days; 83 years, 4 months, 4 days (after one has seen 1000 full moons in one’s life); 88 years, 8 months, 8 days; 99 years, 9 months, 9 days; and, finally, at 105 years, 8 months, 8 days. After these rituals are performed, the person will be regarded as a god. Husband and wife will perform their rituals together, as the events occur for the husband.
Afterwards, the full complement of life cycle rituals will have been completed, until the death ceremony.