Delhiites are in for a treat from the north east this weekend, with the three-day long Jhalak Poorvottar Youth Fest, beginning today. The fest will kick off with a procession from the Red Fort at 10am today. Colourful tableaus will go around Old Delhi displaying the art, culture and textiles from all the north-eastern states — Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Sikkim.
Organised by Integrated Talent Development Mission (ITDM), the fest also marks the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda today. “Swami Vivekananda greatly emphasised the power of the youth,” says Hirak Jyoti Kalita, ITDM secretary. The highlight of the fest is a four-hour cultural event, including performances by 150 artists at Siri Fort Auditorium tomorrow evening.
The stage will be set for a host of folk dances like Sattriya Nritya and Bihu from Assam, Manipuri dance, Cheraw dance (also called bamboo dance) from Mizoram and Thang-ta, Martial art from Manipur. “We hope to bridge the gap between north east and rest of India through this festival,” says Baleshwar Dutt, 19, co-organiser of the festival. “People from north east have to face a lot of discrimination. Art and culture helps bring people together,” says Tanistha Arora, youth coordinator for the fest from Delhi University.
The fest celebrations will end with Bihu Sankranti — a potpourri of Bihu dance from Assam and Bhangra of Punjab.