Chapchar Kut, a winter festival in the tribal state of Mizoram, beckons umpteen numbers of foreign and domestic tourists to the north eastern state. This is an occasion for these ethnic tribal people to relax and refresh just before the cultivation season beginning in March. As winter starts vanishing, the people gear up for the annual event of Chapchar Kut in February-end or in the first week of March. It is basically a spring festival comprising feasts, songs and dances that revive their culture and tradition amid pomp and gaiety.
People of all walks of life come out with colourful traditional attires and costumes much transforming the entire state in to a state of cultural beauty. The tourists generally keep eyes on their distinctive head gears and jewelleries apart from their folk songs and dances accompanied by traditional drums, gongs and cymbals. The salient feature on the cultural front is the group Mizo dance that makes the celebration more joyous which is the need of the hour to strengthen the emotional attachment of brotherhood and bonhomie among the various groups and communities in the beautiful north eastern state. The people of all ages are free to participate in the all forms of dances. Some of the dance forms are martial to be performed by the warriors with weapons in their hands. But the strikingly popular form of dance is Cheraw which is popularly known as bamboo dance. Long bamboo staves are used in this form which is considered to be the most colourful and crowd pulling. The participating people need skill and alertness to gain mastery over this form that keeps the people spell bound. Other forms of Mizo dance have equal degree of popularity during the Chapchar Kut. These include Khuallam, Chheihlam, Chai and Sarlamkai. Tourists take no less delights in the Khual Iam dance that marks a new era for the farming fraternity. Apart from it, these Mizo tribe welcome the distinguished guests with Khual Iam in the community events. The Mizos consider the position to an individual only after clearing a series of heroic deeds including dances.
Feasts are inseparable part of the festival where friends and relatives are invited to be welcomed with Khuallam dance. This is apart from "Chheih lam," another form of group dance which is no less mesmerizing. The war dance is called Solakia, which is accompanied by rhythmic beating of the drums. But Chapchar Kut is also an occasion for the local Mizo artisans to exhibit and sale of indigenous handloom and handicraft products.
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