First ever Ethnic Mega Festival held in Assam

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Guwahati, Oct.29 (ANI): The first ever-Ethnic Mega Festival that offered a platform to showcase the unique cultural heritage of the different indigenous communities in Assam was celebrated in the state recently.

Organized by the Directorate of Cultural Affairs, Assam, the festival was held at the Srimanta Sankaradeva Kalakshetra in Guwahati.

"We have in Assam many ethnic tribal groups but they are not getting adequate exposure. So we are organizing this three-day festival with a view to give full exposure to the tribal culture. The main reason is to give full exposure to the artist of Assam particularly to those who belong to the different ethnic groups as well as to give them exposure to the art and culture of other states," said Sankar Prasad Kakati Bora, Director, Cultural Affairs, Assam.

Over 500 folk artistes from Assam and other states of the Northeast and across the country displayed their traditional dance and music.

Ethnic tribes like Bodo, Mising, Rabha, Tiwa and Deori exhibited their unique attires, dances, music and food at the three-day ethnic festival named "Aikyatan" in Assam.

Besides ethnic groups from Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Gujarat, Orissa, and Chhattisgarh, Meghalaya, and Nagaland also participated in the festival.

"For a particular ethnic group its culture is very important. It is very difficult to tell someone about the particular ethnic group in the absence of tradition and we are participating in this festival to display our unique traditions and cultures to people," said Mihir Borgohain, an Assamese artiste.

On this occasion, makeshift houses of the various tribes were recreated. The cultural extravaganza also featured a number of events including exhibitions, tribal arts and crafts, screening of films, dance and music, lectures and seminars, costume shows, painting, mask making and other cultural items.

"This kind of festival helps in uniting the people," said Sukul, a Santhali tribe of Assam

"We are all Assamese and the unity of all the cultures will help in promoting the Assamese Culture in a better way," said Bijao Krishna Goswami, a local resident.

Everyone felt that the festival would go a long way in encouraging various ethnic groups of Assam and promoting the ulture of the State at the national and international level as well. By Peter Alex Todd(ANI)

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