Godhra Muslims make Dandias for Hindu brethrens during Navrartras

November 14th, 2007 - 2:04 am ICT by admin  
Godhra, Oct.11 (ANI): Though Hindus in Gujarat are known for spirited participation in Garba or Dandia-Raas dances during Navratra festival, not many may know that the sticks used during the traditional dances are made by Muslim families.

Thousands of Muslim craftsmen remain occupied, months ahead of the Navaratri festival to prepare quality Dandias. These dancing-sticks, used during Dandia and Garba dances by Hindu devotees, are decorated with colourful laces, beads and Ghungroos (tiny bells).

“Most of the Dandias supplied all over are made by Muslim craftsmen in Gujarat. These people make quality Dandias that are sent to different part of the country. In Gujarat Dandias are available at reasonable prices,” said Yalip Karati, a wholesale dealer of Dandias.

Ahead of the Navratra festival, beginning on Friday, these Muslim artisans have been busy as bees meeting the deadlines to supply Dandias or, the dance sticks that are in high demand from across the State.

There are around 60 small-scale Dandia making units in Godhra. All these units are Muslim owned and estimated to meet 65 per cent of the total demand across the country for Dandiyas.

It is said that the quality Dandias made in Godhra are of a superior quality.

Apart from Gujarat and Maharashtra (in the Gujarati dominated areas), Dandias are sent to other States including Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.

“Every year, we begin making Dandias at least a month before the Navaratri festival. We supply these Dandias to all over India like Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra and other places,” said Abdul Sattar, owner of a Dandia-making unit.

“Wholesale dealers of Dandias procure the best ones at reasonable rates in Godhra. Hence, they prefer to buy them in bulk from here. By making Dandias we earn a decent livelihood,” Sattar added.

Artisans making the Dandias are a delighted lot since they not only earn but also for having contributed for the celebrations of Hindu brothers and sisters.

“During the Navaratri festival, the demand for Dandias rises and we make ample money to support our families,” said Illiyas, a Dandia craftsman.

Originated as devotional Garba dances, which were performed in Durga’s honor, this dance form is actually the staging of a mock-fight between the Goddess and Mahishasura, the mighty demon-king, and is nicknamed “The Sword Dance”.

The sticks of the dance represent the sword of Durga.

The women wear traditional dresses such as colorful embroidered choli, ghagra and bandhani dupattas (traditional attire) dazzling with mirror work and heavy jewellery. Whereas men wear special turbans and Kedias (the short frock), but can range from area to area. (ANI)

Related Stories

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in National |