Karma Nacha Folk Dance, Odisha

The festival of Karma, which means fate, is widely celebrated all over Central and Eastern India, on the 11th day of the Bhadrab. Karma is known as the god of fortune. According to myths and beliefs, Karma does well to who are good to others and bad to who is evil. It also decides if a particular harvest is supposed to be a good one or a bad one.

Agriculture is one of the major occupations practiced by people in the Central and Eastern region of India which is why, soon before the arrival of the rainy season, people of these regions, perform the Karma Nacha, to please the god of fate.

As history has it, there are many rituals performed at this time. One of the most famous rituals is that of two young girls visiting a tree and collecting its branches. The tree is known to be the Karma tree. Also, the tribal folks celebrate Karma Nacha dance in groups, and this is performed by both, men as well as women. A more fascinating fact about this dance is that the couples address each other by beautiful names, and the ones that seem most in love, are known to the best couple in the dance.

According to stories, this was started by a King who prayed to the Lord Karma when he started to face huge losses. Dance and drama were performed in order to please him. This continues even today, for the same purpose and keeping the same perspective into consideration.

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