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1000s light up at festival

KATHMANDU, Nepal (AP) — Hindu holy men were joined by devotees and the public today at a revered temple in Kathmandu where they lit up marijuana cigarettes during an annual festival despite prohibition and warnings by authorities.

Hundreds of police officers patrolled the forested area around the Pashupati temple, which was crowded with cannabis smokers celebrating the Shivaratri festival.

A group of ruling party lawmakers has recently filed a petition to legalize the farming and use of marijuana.

“There is a ban on smoking marijuana but at the same time it is a centuries-old tradition, which we have to respect,” said police officer Suman Khadka, adding that no arrests were made.

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