Singpho Ethno Cultural Festival (Part- II)


Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi is a colourful festival of the Singphos. Singphos are the people living in the north eastern region of India. Only a few thousand people inhabiting saparsely both in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh. They have a rich cultural heritage which has faded away slowly in course of their living in the midst of blended cultures and different tribes and communities. The modern technologies which brought tremendous changes in man’s way of life, made them close to one another. Now the small community gets together in a particular place and enjoy altogether once in a year. For the first time they celebrated this festival in the year 1985 at Miao in Changlang District in Arunachal Pradesh. Since then, every year they celebrate this festival with great pomp and show under the banner of Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi. Shapawng Yawng is believed to be the forefather of the Singphos. He was the sixth son in order of birth according to the naming custom of the Singphos. Manau Poi means the festival of dance. Dancing in different occasions and actions has its own legend of origin. It is a festival of the Singpho community which has very rich treasure of its traditional and cultural heritage. It is a Poi (festival) of Manau (dance) related to Shapawng Yawng, who is considered to be the forefather of Singphos. Prayers in form of rituals for peace, prosperity and well being of all are performed during the festival. It reaches the peak when Manau (dance) which is a vital element to express zest and joy is performed. Thus Shapawng Yawng Manau Poi characterizes not only colour, jollity, fervor, community feast and an assortment of prayers and rituals but also testifes Singpho’s rich cultural Heritage. This festivals also enriched the culural ties among the Singpho brethrens residing in Arunachal Pradesh, Assam and abroad. It also strengthened the unity and integrity of the Singpho society.

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