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Assam catches Bihu fever

Rains fail to dampen Bihu spirit, Bihutolis turn cultural hubs

Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI: Assam, it seems, has caught spring fever. As though touched by spring fever, Rongali Bihu pandals are agog with cultural programmes till late night. Assam is always famous for its distinctive way of celebrating the onset of spring with the Rongali Bihu – a fertility cult.

In fact, the spring mood has been sweeping the State since the run-up to the Rongali Bihu – right from Uruka on April 13. While Goru Bihu was celebrated in the State with traditional and religious fervour on April 14, the All Guwahati Students’ Union AGSU) celebrated an open Bihu on that day through numerous programmes at Judges’ Field in Guwahati. While Manu Bihu was celebrated on April 15 (Bohag 1), Gossain Bihu is being celebrated on April 16. People were seen seeking blessings from their seniors on that occasion as it goes with the Assamese culture and tradition. The State is set to celebrate Tator Bihu on April 17.

In Guwahati, Bihu pandals are holding cultural programmes till late night – Bihu dancers and singers performing in their traditional best attires at the staccato of the dhol and at the tunes of buffalo-horn bugle (papa), gogona and other traditional Bihu instruments. Bihutolis at Latasil, Kharguli, Pub Guwahati, Pashim Guwahati, Ulubari etc., in Guwahati have been holding Bihu functions. So far, there has been no untoward incident in any Bihu function in the city and elsewhere in the State. Many places in the State were lashed by rains on Saturday and Sunday night. However, the rains have failed to dampen the spring fever sweeping the State.  Bihu Rani, Bihu Konwari and Dholia contests are the main attractions in every Bihu. Such contests do pull a large number of young contestants to vie for crowns. Almost in every Bihutoli in Guwahati such contests have been pulling crowds even since the Bihu celebrations got started.

In a related development, Guwahati roads are wearing a deserted look during the days even as people are seen going to Bihu pandals in hordes in the evening. People like shopkeepers, auto-rickshaw pullers, pullers of e-rickshaws, magic taxi staff, hawkers and vendors have done a vanishing at act these days. How come they stay back in Guwahati when callings come from their beloved ones in native village, towns or districts?

About the author

Ankur Kalita