The state of Chhattisgarh has managed to retain its natural beauty and its old world charm. There is a mysterious aspect to it probably because of the extensive dark forests and the large number of tribal people who inhabit these forests. Little disturbed by the vagaries of modern civilization, these tribal people have a unique culture of their own. One of the old tribal communities in Chhattisgarh is the Gond community. The Madai Festival is celebrated by people belonging to the Gond community with a lot of interest and excitement.
Description of the Madai Festival in Chhattisgarh
The most important feature of the festival is that it is always celebrated in a large ground where it is possible to have a large gathering. After all it is on the occasion of Madai festival that relatives from far and wide come together to laugh, to make merry and to share the joys.
There are several customs which are observed when the Festival of Madai is celebrated. A goat is sacrificed in honor of the tribal gods. This ritual takes place beneath a sacred tree. Then amidst the beating of drums and bells, the goat is taken around the whole village.
A procession of the local gods in which a large number of tribal people participate is the initiation ceremony of the festival. They devotedly offer their prayers and then all the fun and frolic starts.
A large number of shops and eateries are set up on the occasion of the Madai Festival. Many a times, people purchase salt and cooking oil which will last them a year from these shops. You also get to see remarkable examples of the craftsmanship of these tribals often displayed in the shops.
Many cultural programmes are also arranged in the large grounds. There is so much of cheerfulness in the air. The air reverberates with the sound of tribal music and many of them dance to the tunes of these rhythms. Your evenings will surely be very enjoyable because of the memorable performances that they put up.
At night also the merry making continues in full vigor. The men consume intoxicating drinks and dance to the tribal tunes. The sight of this unrestrained merry making is very enjoyable and it is difficult to resist the desire to be one of them and participate in the revelry. The ambience is very cheerful indeed.
Time for celebrating the Madai Festival in Chhattisgarh
Interestingly the Madai festival is celebrated at different times in different places. The people of Bastar celebrate Madai in the month of December and surely this is the place to be if you want to witness the celebrations of the Madai Festival. The people of Kanker, Charama and Kurna celebrate it in the very next month of January. In the beginning of the month of February, this festival is celebrated once again in the Bastar district and at the end of this month it is time for the people of Antagarh, Narayanpur and Bhanupratappur to rejoice. At last in the month of March it is the turn of the people of Kondagaon, Keshkal and Bhopalpattanam to be a part of the Madai festival.