Tuesday, May 30, 2023
Himachal Pradesh

Himachal People

Common Customs

The Thoda and The Buhana

The Thoda custom which probably originated in the Pauranic past, can be seen in the village fairs in the tribal areas. This is a competition in archery in the memory of the Pandavas. In this the interested parties form two teams, one called Pashi and other Sathi. The players then shoot arrows at spots marked near the feet. If the arrow hits the target the player jumps up and names one of the five pandava brothers.

The Buhana custom is a beautiful example of community feelings within the farming communities. In some area this is also known as Hela or Jwari. The planting of seedlings, weeding, hoeing and harvesting are all community activities here, and are performed co-operatively. This custom is beneficial to the smaller and poorer farmers whose necessary chores are thus completed on time without expense. While the tasks are being performed by the entire community for one of their brethren, a drummer stands at a raised spot and beats his drum rhythmically to which all keep time as they go about their work. At the end of the day's work all the workers are fed on Bhatedus (thick round bread made of whole wheat flour) and other delicacies. The women also work with the men and sing to the beat of the drum.