Musical night welcomes Assamese new year

Musical night welcomes Assamese new year
Assemese expats performing tradiditonal Husori dance on the occassion of Assemese New Year in Dubai

Dubai - Rongaali Bihu celebration in Dubai dedicated to sinking island



By Rituraj Borkakoty

Published: Sun 10 Apr 2016, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Mon 11 Apr 2016, 10:18 AM

A dash of Assamese spirit fused with the magical vocals from their biggest heartthrob Zubeen Garg sent the audience to dizzying heights on Friday night. It was a night the Assamese community in the UAE will not forget easily as the organisers left no stone unturned in their attempt to make their Rongaali Bihu celebrations a glorious success.
Rongaali Bihu is celebrated in Assam - a state in India's northeast region - in April to mark the start of the Assamese New Year as well as the onset of spring.
They dedicated their Bihu celebration to the world's largest river island, Majuli. The island on the river Brahmaputra with a population of 150,000 people has been shrinking every year due to floods and erosion, losing more than half of its landmass.
On Friday evening, the organisers highlighted the plight of the people in Majuli. During the inaugural speech, Utpal Kataky, a senior Dubai-based doctor, shared his experience with the audience about a camp for the Majuli children he held with the help of an NGO in last December.
"We went to a very remote village in the island of Majuli where there is no hospital, no doctor. The experience was an eye-opener for me," Kataky said while urging the UAE-based Assamese community to help the people of Majuli in whatever way they can.
Kataky, who came to Dubai in 1976, was then reminiscing old days.
"There were only three families when we arrived here in Dubai. We used to celebrate Rongaali Bihu at our home with those three families. It was all about the spirit. Then more people started coming to the UAE from our state and soon our home wasn't big enough to host 30-40 people for Bihu celebrations! So from 1988 we started organising proper Rongaali Bihu events in Dubai," Kataky said.
What people like Kataky and few others started in Dubai 40 years ago has now become a thriving tradition. The Assamese community is growing every year in the UAE and their spirit comes to the fore every April when they celebrate the Rongaali Bihu in Dubai. This time it was no different either as they came up with several colourful performances at the Carlton Palace Hotel in Deira to showcase the Assam's rich culture.
Bhargav Medhi, a Dubai-based Emirates crew, and Abu Dhabi-based Sangita Phukan, enthralled the audience with their superb Sattriya Nritya performances. Sattriya Nritya is among eight Indian classical dance forms created about 500 years ago by Sankardev, an Assamese saint-scholar, reformer and a multi-faceted genius.
The night became even more vibrant when a group of expats mesmerised the audience with their stupendous Husori dance, a traditional form of Bihu dance.
Each member of the team had practised for a month despite all of them having day jobs. And their hard work bore the most beautiful fruit on Friday night.
The noise-level then reached a crescendo when Zubeen Garg, who has acquired a cult status in Assam, belted out his mellow classics. The 43-year-old singer who took India by storm with his iconic Bollywood hit 'Ya Ali' from Gangster in 2006 was supported on stage by popular Assamese female singer and Gima award nominee Zublee Baruah.
Their performance was truly the icing on the cake in an unforgettable event.
rituraj@khaleejtimes.com

Assemese expats performing tradiditonal Husori dance on the occassion of Assemese New Year in Dubai
Assemese expats performing tradiditonal Husori dance on the occassion of Assemese New Year in Dubai
Assemese expats performing tradiditonal dance on the occassion of Assemese New Year in Dubai
Assemese expats performing tradiditonal dance on the occassion of Assemese New Year in Dubai
Assamese singing superstar Zubeen Garg of Ya Ali fame
Assamese singing superstar Zubeen Garg of Ya Ali fame
Popular Assamese singer Zublee Baruah
Popular Assamese singer Zublee Baruah

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