Friday, June 2, 2023

Fairs and Festivals of Assam


The Kati or Kangali bihu

 Kangali bihuThe Kati or Kangali Bihu is held on the last day of Aswin (Sep-Oct) coinciding with the autumnal equinox. It is called Kangali (poor) because there is not much to eat at this time of the year.

It is a bihu where people of Assam (particularly ladies) worship, pray and welcome Goddess Lakshmi (Goddess of Prosperity) home, lighting earthen mustard oil lamps in the fields where paddy is growing, in front of the sacred tulasi (basil) plant, store (bharal ghar) etc. This ritual continues for a whole month. 

Although Bihu is observed in all parts of Assam, in Goalpara and Kamrup districts of lower Assam and in Darrang district of central Assam, where it is called Domahi it is not accompanied with dancing as in upper Assam. 

A festival called Bhatheli in some parts and Sori in others, which is celebrated in the first week of Bahag can be regarded as a substitute for Bihu in these parts. A special feature of the festival is a colourful fair when people especially young men and girls in new and gay attire from all the neighbouring villages flock together.