Wednesday February 21, 2018
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Khajuraho Dance Festival begins

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Khajuraho: The 42nd Khajuraho Dance Festival began in the temple town of Khajuraho in Madhya Pradesh on Feb 21.

Madhumita Roy and Madhuri Majumdar gave a presentation of Kathak-Kuchipudi and Purvadhanashree presented Bharatnatyam. State Fine Arts Awards were given away to ten artists on the occasion. Programs based on a conversation with artists, screening of documentaries and short films on topics like fine arts and performing arts and an art exhibition are other highlights of the dance festival.

Khajuraho Festival of Dances is celebrated at a time when the hardness of winter begins to fade and the king of all seasons, spring, takes over. The most colorful and brilliant classical dance forms of India with their roots in the long and rich cultural traditions across the country offer a feast for the eyes during a weeklong extravaganza here.

Since time immemorial, myriad forms of dance have been absorbed into the classical dance styles. Watching these performances reveal the age-old trends, traits and nuances that are firmly established in dance in various regions of India.

The festival is a seven-day long celebrated event with various kinds cultural performances and events.

Days: 20 to 26 feb, Entry: Free

Here is a video of the festival

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Strange Rituals: Demon King Ravana is Worshipped on Dussehra

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Effigy of Ravana burns. Dussehra. Wikimedia

Sep 30, 2017: Vijayadashami or Dussehra is celebrated with fervor at the end of Navratri every year. The festival is observed by burning the puppet of King Ravana. While at some places, the celebration of good over evil is celebrated by burning effigy of the demon king, there are some places where Ravana is worshipped on this occasion. It is predisposed amongst the followers that all their wishes come true on this day.

Also Read: Ram and Ravana Have More In Common Than You Think: 5 Traits of the Anti-Hero Ravana That You Must Learn | Dussehra Special

Every year on Dussehra, the 125-year-old Dashanan temple in Shivala area of Kanpur is opened for its devotees. An idol of King Ravana is ornamented, and aarti is performed. Devotees perform religious rituals and light lamps to celebrate the festival. The temple remains closed following the burning of Ravana’s statue.

Dashanan Temple was constructed in 1890 by king Guru Prasad Shukl. The rationale behind the construction of Dashanan temple was Ravana’s adherence towards Lord Shiva.

King Ravana is worshipped at many places in India, for example: In Andhra Pradesh’s Kakinada, a huge shivalinga established by Ravana is revered along with the demon-king. Vidisha, a village in Madhya Pradesh is dedicated to King Ravana. In this village, the first wedding card invitation is sent to Ravana before the commencement of any celebration. Neither the devotees burn dummies of King Ravana, nor do they celebrate Dussehra.

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