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Gujarat: Garba dance included in UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list

Garba dance: Garba is a ritualistic and devotional dance that is performed on the occasion of the festival of Navratri which is dedicated to the worship of the feminine energy or 'Shakti', UNESCO said.

Sheenu Sharma Edited By: Sheenu Sharma @20sheenu Ahmedabad Updated on: December 06, 2023 19:51 IST
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Image Source : PTI (FILE) People perform Garba during Navratri festival

Garba dance: Gujarat'’s popular Garba dance has been included in the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) of Humanity by UNESCO, Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel said today (December 6).

The inclusion has been made under the provisions of the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage during the 18th meeting of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage which began in Kasane, Botswana on Tuesday (December 5).

“Garba of Gujarat is the 15th ICH element from India to join this list. This inscription underscores Garba’s pivotal role as a unifying force that fosters social and gender inclusivity.

“Garba as a dance form is entrenched deeply in ritualistic and devotional roots, involving people from all walks of life and it continues to thrive as a vibrant living tradition bringing communities together,” an official release said.

Garba is celebration of life: PM Modi: 

Know more about Garba dance

Garba is a ritualistic and devotional dance that is performed on the occasion of the festival of Navratri which is dedicated to the worship of the feminine energy or 'Shakti', the UNESCO website said. The dance takes place around a perforated earthenware pot lit with an oil lamp, or an image of the mother goddess Amba.

The dancers move around the centre in a counter-clockwise circle, using simple movements while singing and clapping their hands in unison, it further said. Starting with slow circular movements, the tempo slowly builds up to a frenzied whirling.

The practitioners and bearers of Garba are broad and inclusive, from the dancers to the musicians, social groups, craftspeople and religious figures involved in the festivities and preparations, it said. Garba fosters social equality by diluting socio-economic, gender and religious structures.

It continues to be inclusive of diverse and marginalized communities, thus strengthening social bonds, it said. Traditions or cultural phenomena from India such as Ramlila, Vedic Chants, Kumbh Mela and Durga Puja have already been recognised by the UNESCO list.

ALSO READ:​ Chaniya cholis, indo-western to sarees: 9 Navratri outfit ideas for stunning Garba & dandiya nights

ALSO READ: Amazing stunt: Woman in Garba costume performs skipping while riding bicycle | WATCH

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