Munda martial arts – Jharkhand

Photo Birsa Munda © Wikipedia >> photograph in Roy (1912-72)

“Munda’s rebellion had shaken the foundations of the British empire, fighting the British army’s advanced weapons with bow and arrows. He died under mysterious circumstances in the Ranchi jail, and has, since then, been remembered as a martyr.” – Sushmita in The Wire >>

“Despite the many honours bestowed on Birsa Munda at high places, there has not been much change in the situation of tribal people at the grassroots level. The basic motivations behind tribal rebellions, i.e., Jal, Jangal aur Zameen (water, forest and land) remain the same. Hence, the fight by the tribal people of India will probably continue until a radical change is made in the government’s policy towards them.” – Ivy Imogene Hansdak in The Indian Express >>

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The Munda community of Jharkhand performs the Paika Dance. It is a stylized representation of the rituals connected with the preparations of war. The dancers hold bows, arrows, spears, swords and shields and the dance is, in fact a stylized worship of arms. […]

Previously the dance was performed to welcome guests, but nowadays it is also performed on different happy occasions like weddings. The Dussehra celebrations remain incomplete without this dance. The musical accompaniments of this dance are the Dhol, Nagara, Shehnai and Ranbheri. The Mundas originally came from North West India, but later moved to the Chota Nagpur Plateau. They began their settlements here by clearning forests. They were the first tribal people to resist colonization. The Paika Dance of the Mundas symbolises the great war of their community against the British. […] This captivating dance form, which is indigenous to the Mundas, is a martial art with variations throughout Jharkhand.

Source: Easrern Zonal Cultural Centre
Address : http://ezccindia.org/jharkhand.html
Date Visited: Thu Aug 25 2011 23:48:04 GMT+0200 (CEST)

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https://joharjournal.org/ram-dayal-munda/

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