Shillong, Nov 10 (UNI) Wangala, the anceint festival of the indigenious Garo community was celebrated at Asanang in Meghalaya with traditional fanfare and delight.
The two-day 'Wangala' or the hundred drum festival came to an end with thousands of tribal Garo people from across Garo Hills and Assam gathering at Asanang to thank their ancestral God, Misi Saljong (the great river of the God of Wealth) for having blessed mankind with the rich harvest of the season.
Deputy Chief Minister Mukul M Sangma, Bangladesh's Awami League MP Pramode Mankin were among the diginataries, who took part in the celebration.
The Wangala had been practised by the Songsareks or non-Christian Garos from time immemorial in all villages of Garo Hills. The time and mode of celebration varied from village to village.
However, due to impact of modern civilization 'Wangala', the cultural identity of the Garos, was fast disappearing.
In order to protect, preserve and promote this cultural identity, a group of Garo thinkers and leaders came together and decided to organise the Wangala festival on modern lines.
A group of 15-30 dancers with ten drums would form a contingent and ten such contingents with 300 dancers would make up the 'Hundred Drums Wangala Dance Festival'.
The first ever Hundred Drums Wangala Festival was organised on December 6 and 7, 1976 at Asanang, the headquarters of Rongram Development Block. Since then, the festival was being celebrated in the second week of November every year.