Bathinda, Dec 21(ANI): With modernisation, villages in Punjab have undergone a sea change, as has the standard of living. But, in the process, tradition and culture have been adversely affected. However, there is a glimmer of hope, as a heritage foundation is working towards restoring the lost glory of the state.
The'Malwa Heritage Foundation' is making an effort to revive the ancient folk arts, customs and traditions.
A life-like creation by the foundation, the fourth 'Virasat Mela', was a picturesque journey into a bygone era.
A snobbish landlord riding on a horse, a bride sitting in a palanquin and a woman at the spinning wheel - the three-mile long heritage walk was joined by over a hundred artists along with folk dancers, singers and stuntmen.
Interestingly, for the first time, a real marriage was solemnized with traditional fervour and gaiety.
"We are enjoying ourselves. It is very entertaining. This is a very good way of showcasing our heritage to the people. I think we can't have better knowledge about our culture anywhere else than this fair. The marriage of a girl is actually being organized here. She is very happy that her marriage has been organized in such a big manner and many leaders have come to attend it," a local said.
"We felt very happy. A procession of Haji Rattan Sahib passed through village Jaipalgarh in the morning. In such fairs we get a chance to connect to our long forgotten heritage. It reminds us of the old times and our forefathers. In this way this fair has benefited us a lot and we are very happy," he added.
The recreated village showcased traditional activities like a woman at the spinning wheel, grinding wheat and other activities.
A heritage walk led by a procession of elephants, horses and camels enthralled one and all.
People applauded the effort to raise awareness among the youngsters about the glorious past.
"It is a very good effort to remind us of our ancient culture. Our kids have got to see and learn about a lot of things, which even we are unaware of. Like we got to see the old houses made with mud. We should continue such efforts to remain connected with our culture," another local said. hether it was the folk dances or folk songs by Marasi singers - the event was steeped in nostalgia.
The daredevil stunts, juggling and acrobatics by stuntmen also mesmerized the spectators. by P. S. Mittha (ANI)