The north-eastern part of our country is filled with various cultures and traditions with several tribal communities celebrating their own festivals in a royalist manner. Undoubtedly, that is the distinctness of the region. Similarly, the Singpho tribe, dwellers of Arunachal Pradesh celebrates their cultural festival Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi.
What Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi is all about?
Arunachal Pradesh's Singpho tribe celebrates their ethnocultural festival Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi which is the most significant dance festival of the community. The festival is named 'Manau Poi' as well which is the national celebration of the community belonging to Myanmar.
The festival is generally observed between February twelve to fifteenth, however, February 14 is the primary day of the celebration.
The Shapawng Yawng is referred to as the forefathers of the community. The literal meaning of the term Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi is, 'Poi' refers to the festival, 'Manau' implies Dance and so Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi denotes Dance Festival in honor of Shapawng Yawng.
The prime motive behind the organization of this festival is to portray the wide varieties of rich culture and traditions, their customs, and wildlife biodiversity of Arunachal Pradesh. Simultaneously, it is a responsible attempt to promote, protect and preserve the ancient cultural rich heritage of the small population of the community.
Additionally, Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi festival nurtures the social relationship and communication that will bring a sense of unity among themselves. the Singpho tribe is one of the small distinct communities of several tribes that constitute Arunachal Pradesh and this festival brings them into the limelight and gives them an opportunity to portray their rich cultural heritage to the country.
The Singphos have a belief that they were the descendants of their forefather, Shapawng Yawng who is believed to be the first human born on this planet. And so Manau Poi is performed to honor and show respect to their forefather, Shapawng Yawng.
How the Festival is being celebrated?
The annual festival of the Singpho community commences with the hoisting of the festival flag by one of the chiefs of the Singhpho tribe, Duwa Bisa Latnong. Thirty-two gunshots are being fired to mark the commencement of the festival.
Following this, all kinds of cultural events are being held like the people of the community gathered together and perform their traditional dance Thunghkring Manau around the sacred wooden pillars.
What they wear?
The males adorn Khaithung, which is a black and green colored lungi and a shirt named Samtong with accessories like Khak (a bag), and Khuphok (turban). While the female attire is Choi (tops) and Singket (skirt-like wrapper), accessorized with Manmaokring (a hat) and Phugak (necklace).
Arunachal CM, Pema Khandu wishes the Singpho community on this special occasion:
Arunachal Chief Minister, Pema Khandu took to Twitter to extend his warm wishes and greeting to the Shingpho tribe, " May Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi, the joyous dance festival, bring in good harvest, prosperity and good health for our people. I wish my #Singpho brothers and sisters a very happy celebration."
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