Shrawan 1 (July 16 in 2021) is being celebrated as the Luto Falne Din or Saune Sakranti (1st of Shrawan) in different parts of Nepal. The celebration is more common in hilly part of Nepal among the farmers.
The story of the day :
The day also marks the first day to start eating the corn in some communities. In hilly areas, wild plants like Lutesaro, Kukur Daino, Bhalaayo, Kurilo, lutejhar, pani amala, lime, guava and pear leaves are burnt and a burning wooden stick is thrown to cross a stream or depressed land. While throwing people scream on the top of their voice by saying “Luto Jaa, Luto Jaa”. Such proceedings are usually done late in the evening after sunset. Different communities use different musical instruments while throwing away the ‘Luto’. Some bang on Nanglo, others blow on sea shell, ring bells. Some even bang on the closed door.
For the celebration, youth usually go to forest to collect the wild plants. Although the festival is mostly celebrated in hilly reason, these days people in Terai region also celebrate Luto Falne festival.
In some communities, Shrawan first is considered a best day to invite married daughters with her husband and have a festive environment. Such tradition is more common in Magar communities.
Because of the rainy season, people usually get itchy skin rash, termed as luto. The festival is supposed to get rid of such rashes. After working in paddy field in mud in Ashad, people use different medicinal plants to treat skin diseases. For the treatment, a demon named Kandarak is worshiped and the burning stick is thrown.
Festival of Green
The month of Shrawan is considered to be the month of Lord Shiva. Women in this month wear green clothes and green jewelries like green glass bangles. In the month people visit local Shiva temples. Pashupatinath in Kathmandu is crowded throughout the month.
The green dresses are considered to keep ones closer to nature. As the month Shrawan and the day Monday is considered that of Shiva, every Monday in Shrawan months are special for the Shiva devotees.
Read: 2018 post on the festival