All Over India Festivals

Festivals in Meghalaya
Wangala Festival | Behdienkhlam Festival | Khasi Hill Festival

Wangala Festival

WANGALA (October – November): This is the biggest of all the festivals of the Garos performed in connection with the Jhum Cultivation. This is usually held in October, but each village sets its own time and so there are two or three weeks during which Wangala is celebrated in one or two villages. The festival of a single village lasts about a week. This festival is observed to honour and offer sacrifices to their greatest God called Saljong (Sun-God).

The festival is initiated right in the field by simple but impressive ceremony known as Rugala, followed by the ceremony of incense known as ‘Chachat Soa’. This is performed inside the house of the Nokma or Chief of the village. The Nokma, amidst burning of incense, beating of drums and chanting of the people, utters a few words of incantation and pours rice beer and sprinkles rice powder over a collection of field produces offered to the gods. The drinking, dancing and merry making in their colourful costumes with feathered headgear start to the tunes of music played on long oval shaped drums.

Doregata Dance festival is another interesting dance where, while dancing the women try to knock off the turbans of their male partner using their head. If the women succeed, it is followed by peals of laughter.

The Chambil mesara or Pomelo Dance is a solo dance-form, which requires skill. The performer dangles a pomelo on a cord tied to his waist and then hurls it around without any perceptible movement of the hips. Expert dancers can hurl two separate fruits hung on a cord.


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