Bihu Dance

In a bid to incorporate Bihu in UNESCO’s intangible cultural heritage list, the International Council on Monuments and Sites’ (ICOMOS), India, NE Zone has uploaded the intangible facets of Bihu into the ‘International Committee on Intangible Cultural Heritage’ (ICICH) website of UNESCO.

The all-embracing article on Bihu and a few video clips uploaded into the website, if accepted in that category, will help in obtaining UNESCO’s projects for the promotion of Bihu at the international level, and also for the preservation of the prototypical features.

The initiative was taken by Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti, an expert of ICOMOS, in the wake of a webinar on ‘Bihu – An Agrarian Festival of Assam’ held on September 20. ICOMOS is a sister organization of ICICH.

Presentations on the various cultural heritages of Bihu were made by three panelists–Pradip Neog, Dinesh Gogoi and Mridu Moucham Bora.

Inspired by the intangible facets presented during the webinar, ICOMOS members expressed the view that Bihu fulfilled the criteria of getting enlisted as UNESCO’s intangible cultural heritage.

Borkakoti obtained an extended edition of the lecture of the panelist Pradip Neog in the form of an article and submitted it along with selected YouTube video clips to the competent authority of ICICH, resulting in uploading of the elucidations of the festival on the ICICH website.

The uploaded video clips are on Bihu dance Hunchari, Jeng-Bihu, and Gogona.

In-depth analyses of all three are presented in the article so as to establish their features and distinctiveness.
The prototypical rhythm, feet movement, waist twisting, body gyrations, poses, and expressions of Bihu dance are revealed succinctly.

Sajib Borua, a faculty of Assam Agricultural University, said that the uploading of the article and video clips in the international website is a great step towards bringing glory to the rich tradition of Assam in the international communities, and for attaining global recognition.

He said very little is known about Bihu in the international arena as there are very few articles on the net on the subject written in English.

“The uploading of the Bihu article in the UNESCO is welcome and indicates a recognition of the folk dance and thereby the rich cultural heritage of Assam,” he said.

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