Nongkrem dance festival held in Meghalaya

| Updated: Dec 17, 2016 16:57 IST

Shillong (Meghalaya) [India], Dec. 17 (ANI): Hundreds of locals recently thronged the Smit, the cultural centre for Khasi Hills in Meghalaya, to witnesses one of the most ancient and grand festivals of the indigenous Khasi tribe, the Nongkrem dance festival, here. The festival brought together tourists from different parts of the state as well as from all around the globe together. During the festival, which is celebrated as a Thanksgiving Day, rituals are performed to appease the all- powerful Goddess, 'Ka Blei Synshar' for a rich bumper harvest and prosperity of the people. "In this convocation, we celebrate the day as a Thanksgiving day to offer our prayers to the Almighty God, that so much generously help us throughout the year. And we pray him to continue his blessings to the people of our land and to prosper in every way," said Dr. Balajied Singh Syiem, Syiem (King) of Hima Khyrim. As per the rituals, unmarried young women, decked up in their exotic and traditional attires, move to the centre of dancing arena in front of the Ling Sad (thatched palace) and take tiny steps as per the drum beats. The men hold a sword in their right hand and usually a white Yak hair whisk in their left, dancing more vigorously and energetically to the beats of the drums and the tunes of the tangmuri or pipes. Dressed in their best, hundreds of locals thronged the hilltop to witness the ancient festival. "We are in Meghalaya at the moment, just doing some research for some work and we are enjoying this fantastic festival today, the first time ever seeing this Khasi tradition and we are looking forward to it," Dominic, a Tourist from London. Such festivals are playing an important role to revive the dying traditions and customs of many indigenous tribes in the northeast region. (ANI)