Nacha, is a kind of folk theatre found in the entire state of Chhattisgarh in India except Bastar and Sarguja region. Although there are four different forms of Nacha, Khare Saaj Nacha; Gandawa Nacha; Dewar Nacha and Baithe Saaj Nacha, the troupes performing Khare Saaj, Dewar or Gandawa Nacha are very few. The most popular form today is Baithe Saaj Nacha. Comedy is an essential and a most entertaining aspect of the Nacha folk theatre. The humorous skits of Nacha also incorporate themes on social issues to create awareness.
Source IGNCA Inventory of ICH, Janapada Sampada Division, IGNCA
Contributed by Aditya, CEE Ahmedabad
Nabanna literally means 'Nobo-Onno', or New Rice. This is a Bengali harvest celebration usually celebrated with food, dance and music.
Nachiarcoil in Thanjavur district of Tamil Nadu is famous for a light brown sand called vandal on the banks of the river Cauvery that is ideally suited for making moulds. Owing to the growing scarcity of copper, the bell-metal workers of the state have now switched to brass ware. Some of the articles cast are vases in different shapes, tumblers, water containers, ornamented spitoons, food cases, bells, candle stands, kerosene lamps, picnic carriers, and a large variety of lamps. Of these, a few items like tumblers, food cases and milk containers are in bell metal and the rest are in brass. A special jar with a cashew-nut design and named after it has become a kind of hallmark of Nachiarcoil.
Contributed by: Vanitha and Team, CEE South
Naga women are excellent weavers and this is reflected in the colourful chang woven by them. There are numerous traditions and beliefs associated with the weaving and wearing of this traditional dress. A chang cloth requires all the zigzag lines to fall uniformly, or else the young warrior wearing it may die a premature death. When a Konyak woman gets married she wears a shatni shawl which is preserved and used later only to wrap her dead body. Convention demands that a rongtu shawl be worn only if the mithun sacrifice has been carried out over three generations.
Nandadevi Raj Jat is an important religious event of Chamoli district in the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand. It involves a long trek in order to take the area’s reigning deity – Goddess Nanda to her divine destination of Gaungati peak which is believed to be the abode of her consort, Lord Shiva.
A festival is held every year at Namdapha in Arunachal Pradesh to showcase the traditional and cultural practices and to preserve and promote the traditions of the ethnic tribes of Arunachal Pradesh. Namdapha, one of the best biodiversity hot spots and a tiger reserve, presents a colourful picture of the diverse culture of the tribes of Arunachal in the midst of nature's bounty.
This festival is celebrated on the bright half in the month of 'Bhadrab'. A widely practiced custom among the tribal as well as non-tribal population of Odisha is the offering of the first fruits to the deities, especially to the village deities. Paddy is the most significant crop which is respected as Goddess Laxmi. There is a special variety of early paddy which is already ripe by this time and the festival is intended for eating new rice of the year. On this occasion the new rice is cooked with milk and sugar ('Khiri') and then offered as 'Bhog' to Goddess of wealth Maa Laxmi. Meeting and exchanging greetings with friends and relatives, singing, dancing and merry-making is part of the festival.
Contributed by CEE East