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Fairs, Festivals, Melas

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Tree-worship marks 'Sarhul' festival in Ranchi
by Girija Shankar Ojha

     Ranchi: Tribes in Ranchi celebrated 'Sarhul,' a festival marking the beginning of New Year, by worshipping trees. This annual festival is celebrated during the spring season and is basically the worship of the trees and other elements of nature. "We celebrate 'Sarhul' to mark the beginning of our new year. During this festival, we pray to elements of nature, life and environment depends on nature only. If environment is lost, then there will be no humans or animals," said Mukund Nayak, a tribal artisan. "'Sarhul is the festival of sowing seeds. It is also a spring festival and beginning of wedding season. So, it is the festival of reproduction," said Basanti Kunjun, Head, Department of Regional Languages, Ranchi University. The main function was organised by the Department of Tribal and Regional Languages, Ranchi University. Later, a colourful procession turned the streets of Ranchi into a vibrant city. Tribes all across Jharkhand celebrate this festival with great fervor and joy. Tribal men, women and children dress up in colourful and ethnic attires and perform their traditional dances. They also drink a locally made beer, brewed out of a concoction of rice, water and some tree leaves and then dance around the tree. The beer is served in leaf cups.
-Apr 3, 2009

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