Mains Ornaments Popular in Tribes of Chhattisgarh and Special Tradition
- Chhattisgarh is well known for its rich cultural heritage that reflects various aspects of this beautiful state. Cultural life of Chhattisgarh comprises varied forms of traditional art and crafts, tribal dances, folk songs, regional festivals and fairs and amusing cultural fests.
- Mainly, Chhattisgarh is occupied by tribal people who have preserved their rich tribal culture modestly and religiously. Eastern parts of the state of Chhattisgarh are influenced with Oriya culture.
- People of the state are traditional and believe in simple way of living following their traditional customs and beliefs. It can be visibly observed in their food habits, festivals and fairs, costumes, ornaments, folk dance and music as well.
- Chhattisgarh also hosts various cultural fests like Chakradhar Samaroh, Sirpur National Dance and Music Festival and Bastar Lokotsav etc. that showcase vibrant cultural life of the state.
- Hinduism is the major religion in the state of Chhattisgarh. Besides, the state also has a significant population of followers of Islam and Buddhism.
- Apart from that tribals of the state follow their own set of beliefs and customs while many of the tribes have converted into Christians. Satnami, Kabirpanth and Ramnami Samaj etc. are other religious sects, what you can say offshoot of Hinduism.
- Most of the population in Chhattisgarh state communicates in Chhattisgarhi, a dialect of Hindi language. Hindi is the official language of Chhattisgarh and mostly spoken by non-rural population of the state. Earlier, Chhattisgarhi was famous as “Khaltahi” among the surrounding hill-people while Sambalpuri and Oriya speaking people generally referred it to as “Laria”.
- Kosali, Oriya and Bhojpuri languages are also spoken by people in Chhattisgarh and Telugu is also spoken in few parts of the state.
- Being a tribal dotted region, Chhattisgarh has a multihued tribal culture reflecting vibrant colors of tribal life.
- “Tribal” word is basically used in India for the inhabitants who are known as indigenous in other countries. In Hindi language, the word “Tribal” means ‘Adivasi’ (ancient inhabitants) and these people are classified as “aboriginals” as per National census and are listed according to the tribes.
- India is home to several tribes and Chhattisgarh houses many of them as this land had been occupied by many tribes and been a tribal dotted land in ancient times too. In fact, Chhattisgarh is home to the oldest tribal communities of the India.
- It is also assumed that the earliest tribal communities of the region have been living for over 10,000 years in Bastar region of the state. Basically, tribal people do not belong to Hindu religion but they have imbibed various features of Hindu culture.
Tribal Culture in Chhattisgarh
- The main tribes residing in Chhattisgarh include Gond, Abujmaria , Bisonhorn Maria, Bhatra, Muria, Halba, Parja and Dhurvaa tribes (in Bastar), Muriya, Dandami Mariya or Gond, Dorla and Halba tribes (in Dantewara), Korwa, Kawar, Gond, Bhaiyana, Rajgond, Binjwar and Dhanwar tribes (in Korba), Kol, Gond and Bhunjia tribes (in Koriya), Parghi, Savra, Manji and Bhayna tribes (in Bilaspur and Raipur), Kamar tribe (in Gariabandh, Mainpur, Dhura and Dhamtari) and Munda tribe (in Surguja and Jashpur).
- Every tribe has a Sarpanch, who is the chief of that tribal community and main advisor as well as mediator in disputes of the people of that specific tribe.
- Sarpanch is assisted by a team of 5 advisors, each known as Panch. The Sarpanch and 5 Panchs are highly respected by other members of the community.
- Every tribal community has its own rich past and culture of traditional dance, music, food and dress. But all these tribes have one thing in common and that is way of living – simple and nature loving.
Some Examples of Tribes
Ornaments of Bison Horn Maria tribes:
- Most men content themselves with one or two small bead necklaces (mungya) round their necks, the beads being all of one shape. They are fond of necklaces of small, brightly and the girdled bead, which they are called mirako-mungya.
- They wear one or two armlets on one arm above the elbow or a pair of bracelet on one wrist of silver, brass or aluminum. They wear a plain waist-cord instead of the cowry-cord of the hills for carrying knives and tobacco boxes.
- Women wear armlets and wristlets. They wear iron neck ring, which is called tiya. The nose is symmetrically adorned by two gold gilt rings and a small gold ornament like a leaf pointing set in the middle.
- Weapon and Tools of Bison Horn Maria tribes:
- The bison horn maria uses a long and powerful stabbing spear for killing the big game, including tiger and panther.
- In case of hill maria, the distinctive types of weapons are made by the blacksmith living in their hills and are used for hunting.
- The chief agricultural implements of the bison horn maria, with which they hack up the surface and slopes and their occasional patches of permanent cultivation, are their kargudar (hoe).
- Arrow is the most important instrument for killing
- Traditional Dance of Bison Horn Maria tribes:
- The bison horn maria’s dances are quite different from the other tribes of India. They dance forming a circle with men and woman standing alternatively.
- They wear ceremonial head dress, which are made of a pair of bison horn and collection of cowricshell, beads and spike. Strings of beads are lesion all round this head-dress which partly covers their faces.
- Women wear their brass tiaras and the brief wraps around their waists and stand in between the men.
- Men of all ages, married and unmarried, youth, boys, young wives and girls join the dance. Before dance they take landa or mahua liquor.
- The head-dress is passed on to the son or brother after the death of a person. Except during the rain and the sowing season, any night is good for dance and no preparatory is required.
- These days, the practice of dance is decreasing day by day. Some people are practicing this dance and they make this dance their profession.
- They perform this dance in other part of India and abroad. The dance is known as dhemsa.
The Muria Tribe:
- The house acts as a community centre for the youth.
- It is a meeting place for the elders where they gather both in the morning and evening to discuss local affairs. It also serves the purpose of an informal leisure centre for the males.
- It functions as the centre for planning and co-ordination of each and every collective activities of the community.
- It acts as the court house of the village elders where feuds are settled and often justice administered informally.
- It also acts as a communication centre for all messengers that bring news from the Gond villages.
- Its most important function is to provide sleeping accommodation to the youths, bachelors and widowers.
- It is used as a storehouse of the communal properties and a place for keeping common accounts.
- It is a museum of their art and craft with all its carved structures on the pillars, paintings on the walls and the musical instruments stored.
- It is the starting point for the ritual occasions, in each and every religious ceremony organized by the community like taking the sacred fire to kindle the first bush wood for shifting cultivation.
Dress and Ornaments The Muria Tribe:
- The muria of this region follow a specific dress pattern that can be differentiated on the basis of age and sex. The older man wears lungi and gancha.
- The new generation youth have adapted to the pants, shirts and lungis as outwear. The women wear sarees and blouse; the younger girls have taken salwar and saree as outwear. Girls often wear rows of combs in their hair, with their bunches of cowries and balls of red and green wool.
- Both chelik and mortiari love to put flowers in their hair or over their ears.
- They wear many necklaces of red and white beads. The following are the names of some necklaces:
Name of Necklace (English) Name of Necklace (Local)
- Small black beads ——–Gar-gatti
- White beads —————-Modi mala
- Red beads ——————-Jat mungiya
- Red and white beads——– Jug-jugi
- Neck band ——————-Ban suta
- Black necklace —————Kari
- The girls wear floppy brass pair slopping down over the heels and a thick heavy brass tin-kor above the anklet.
- Behind the head, they wind it over the small wooden block which is called kunjar balla. They also use the cowric belt on the hips.
- All the girls use a hand brass ring which is called haat bala.
The Dhorla Tribes:
Marriage Custom of the Dhorla Tribes:
- In their marriage system, monogamy is the rule but polygamy is also allowed. Marriage by negotiation is most the popular form of marriage and sometimes crosscousin marriage is performed .
- They have a custom of payment of a bride price. Widow re-marriage, levirate, sorarate, marriage by elopement and exchange are also permitted. Marriage rituals take place at the bridegroom’s house.
- A married woman wears a particular type of necklace in her finger as a symbol of the marriage. Divorce is permitted, but it is rare. They follow the Hindu way of marriage system.
Dress and Ornaments of the Dhorla Tribes:
- The men wear loin-cloth known as gos; most of them wear turban (tall-gudda), and they do not cover the upper portion of their body.
- Women wear saree (gudda) and blouse or raika. They use blanket in winter.
- They use various types of ornaments. Women wear glass and silver bangles and silver anklet (beri).
- The married women wear puste, a type of necklace as a system of marriage. The girls and aged women wear billa, a necklace.
- Men wear bangle, armlet and silver chain around the waist.
- The women tattoo their faces and arms with dots and lines
Dress and Ornaments of Halba Tribe
- Men wear dhoti, and shirt, while the women wear saree covering shoulders and up to the knees.
- The women are very much fond of wearing ornaments and wear necklace, armlets, bracelets, nose ornaments, ear top etc.
- Those who cannot afford gold or silver, then at least wear a bead. Girls must be tattooed before their marriage.
- They make dots on the left nostril, centre of the chin and three dots in a line on the right shoulder.
Dress and Ornament of the Dhurwa/Paraja
- The men wear a loin cloth round the waist and remain bare for the upper pant. In winter, they cover their upper portion of the body with a wrapper known as barki.
- The women wear white cotton cloth (ganda) and dhoti, which covers both the lower and upper portion of the body.
- Tattooing is done on the bark portion of legs, upper portion of arms, almost bordering the breast, the chin, and the fingers.
- Young men and women wear three or four rows of multi-colored bead necklace with a glittering yellow metallic piece, which is available in the market.
- Finger rings or vat are very common among them.
- Women wear anklets (pendil) of brass, silver, multi-colored churi (bangle), amulets, etc.
Special Tradition in Chhattisgarh
- The culture of Chhattisgarh in it itself is every rich and interesting. Since ancient time people in this region have been known to have strong faith in God, which gives devotional touch to this culture.
- However known for their modesty kindness and adjustable nature. People of this area fond of variety in dressing entertainment and way of life.
- They tend to follow new life style and this is prime reason behind people adopting modern life style and Chhattisgarh custom and tradition is new mostly limited to rural areas. The culture has unique style of music and dance.
- Raut Nacha,Dewar Nacha,Panthi and Soowa Padki and Pandwani are some of musical styles and dance dramas.
- Pandwani is a famous musical way of singing Mahabharat in this region.
- The particular music style has been brought in to limelight by well known Teejan Bai and young Ritu Verma colourful dresses and spice for life for women and Men of this part of country women are fond of Kachhora a typical manner of wearing Lugda (saree) and Polkha (blouse) with set of attractive ornaments are symbolic of tradition and heritage of Chhattisgarh.
- Various decarative items used by women are Bandha (necklace made of coins) and Silver necklace Suta Phuli for noseBali and Khuntis for ears,Ainthi(of Silver worn in forearm) Palta, Choora(bangles) Kardhani on waist (a belt like thing made of silver) Pounchi a ring for upper arm and Bichhiya worn on toes.
- Men also decorate themselves with Koundhi (necklace of beads) and Kadhah (bangles) for occasion like dances. Colourful dresses and variety of ornaments are “spice of life” for women and men of this part of country.
- Chhattisgarh is also famous for its traditional folk songs in which sohar songs are related to marriage celebration.
- The main part Bihav songs are chulmati, Telmati, Maymauri, Nahdauri, Pargani, Bhadoni and other songs related to Bhanwer, Dowery and vidai songs.Pathoni songs are related to Gauna (departure of bridegroom home) Seasonal chhattisgharhi folk songs are cherchera song (in welcome of new crops).
- The play songs of children are Loria, Fugdi, Kau, Mau, Khudwa (Kakdi) Dandi, Fuha etc. Dohe of Raut Nach a(Dipawali) Sua songs, Janwara songs, Bhojali songs, Dhankul songs, songs of Nag Panchami, Mata Seva songs. Baansgeet etc. Karma dance songs are (Bamboo) found in various form.
- Beside traditional folk song and dance the state is famous for its unique fairs and festivals. These festivals and fairs held throughout the year and they have their own specific importance.
- The fairs of Chhattisgarh are Fair of Ratanpur, Setganga fair, Sagar fair, Belpan fair held in Magh Purnima, Dushera fair, a tribal fair held in the month of October.
- Maa Bamleshwari Fair, held during Navratri festival on the hills of Dongargarh. Rajim fair held in the month of February and March near Mahanadi.
- Rajim Kumbh fair held in Magh Purnima and continue for fifteen days. Marai Fair of Baster, Fair of Shankarji held on the Mahashivaratri and continue for seven days.
- Khallari fair on Navratri fair of Narayanpur Shivrinarayan fair held in the month of Maghpurnima and continue till Shivratri.
- Beside these there are other fairs are Sirpur fair, Kameshwar mela, Bamhani fair, Girodhpuri fair, Bhoramdev fair, Dongpathra fair, Rudreshwar fairs, Billaimata ka mela, Kabirpanthi mela, khassaghat and shivghat ka mela, kharraghat and shivghat ka mela.
- Beside fairs there are many festivals like Hareli, Charta Navakhana are the harvest festival, Marai, Pola, Surhul, Chetrai, Kajare, Govardhan Puja, Bhagoria Korba Mahotsav,Dussehra (Bastar Dussehra celebrated for 75 days) Diwali, Narratri, Gaura, Teeja, Parva,Holi, Janamashtami, Rakhi, Makar sankranti and Ganesh Chaturthi celebrated by the people of this state with great pride and enthusiasm
Life of the people-Socio cultural traditions
- One beautiful aspect which has been a part of the tribal is their love for music and dance. This also displays the deep rooted cultural strength of the tribals. A recreational activity, music and dance makes up their daily lives. It is also a means used to entertain visitors and tourists or any tribal event. Number of tribal groups makes up this region, all with their unique customs, traditions and lifestyle.
- Music which displays different tunes taking the tune of folk, classic and modern, dance has its features too. And with tribal dance, there are dozens in form. Some of the forms of tribal dance are Panthi, Pandwani, Rawat Nacha, Soowa Nacha and Karma. Musical instruments also play an important role in their dance and music. Mandar drum and the Jhanjh are two folk instruments.
- Panthi and Padwani (a folk ballad) forms of dance are practiced by tribes of the Durg district. Padwani is a form of musical recital. Depending on the story, the leading character takes centre stage. Vedamati and Kapalik are two forms of style to present the Padwani dance. In Vedamati form, a narrator narrates while in Kapalik form, scenes from the selected story are enacted. During festivals and special occasions, the Stananmi community sing and dance before their idol Jaitkham.
- The Yaduvanshis (clan of Yadu) practise the Rawat Nacha form of dance. In this form, the performance is in praise of Lord Krishna, on Dev Uthani Ekadashi, the eleventh day after Diwali. Another famous form of theatre is Nacha.
- Popular as the Parrot Dance, the womenfolk dance circling a parrot placed in the middle. One can witness this dance in Bilaspur during the Rawat Nach Mahotsav folk dance festival.
- The tribes of Gonds, Baigas and Oraons practice the Karma form of dance. In this form of dance, men and women dance following the lead of a singer. With the end of rainy season and the beginning of spring season, the tribals practice this dance.
- The humorous skits of Nacha incorporate issues of social awareness.
- Thus Chhattisgarh is blessed with many indigenous performing arts of unique dance style, melodious folk songs and colorful dance dramas. A visit to this beautiful place will only be complete when one can also experience the uniqueness of the region.