According to a Government notification, Odisha’s ‘Manabasa Gurubara’, ‘Chhau Dance’, and ‘Rabana Chhaya Dance’ have now been included among 106 items listed in Intangible Cultural Heritage list released by the Union culture ministry.
Hon’ble Union culture minister Prahlad Singh Patel said 13 traditions of Indian Intangible Cultural Heritages were already recognized by UNESCO, and the national list was an attempt to further raise awareness and protect these practices.
“This initiative is a part of the ministry’s Vision 2024 program. In the list released on the ministry’s website, a total of 106 practices from different states are mentioned, though some are repeated as they occur in more than one state and five elements are common to the entire country,” Patel said.
The Intangible Cultural Heritage list consists of five broad categories including oral traditions, performing arts, social practices, knowledge, and practices related to nature and traditional craftsmanship.
This is worth mentioning that the Chhau Dance was originated in the Mayurbhanj district of Odisha and is widely performed in Mayurbhanj and Balasore districts. It is based on the martial arts tradition where the dancers tell the tales of Hindu epics such as Ramayana, Mahabharata, Puranas, and other classical Indian literature in a dance form.
Manabasa Gurubara is a festival celebrated by Hindu families in Odisha to please the Goddess of Wealth Laxmi. The festival is observed every Thursday in the month of ‘Margasira’ according to the Hindu calendar.
Ravana Chhaya is considered a single dance style or a family of related dances. It generally performed by the dancers of Puri district.
There are two video links of Chhau and Ravana Chaya dances released by the Union Culture Ministry on its official website. By clicking on the video link people can see the dance videos and learn more about the rich heritage of the state.
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