Monthly Archives: March 2017

Behold the colourful extravaganzas of Gangaur Festival in Rajasthan

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Behold the colourful extravaganzas of Gangaur Festival in Rajasthan

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Vibrant clothes, mehandi designed hands, sounds of folk music, temple hymns and decorated streets! Gangaur festival offers a beautiful blend of religious and colourful extravaganzas in the culturally rich state of Rajasthan. It is among the most enthusiastically celebrated fairs and festivals of Rajasthan. Celebrated across the state, Gangaur reserves a remarkable seat in Jaipur. It is held in the months of March or April. This year’s dates are 30th and 31st March.

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Gangaur festival in Rajasthan is also considered as a celebration of ‘Martial Fidelity‘. Onlookers, especially tourists, find it exciting to watch the various ceremonies and activities of the festivals and show keen interest in learning about the culture.

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You’d love to catch a glimpse of groups of womenfolk, who are the main participants of the festival. They enthusiastically adorn the idols of Eesar (Lord Shiva) and Gaur (Goddess Gauri), the consort of Lord Shiva. The intensity of faith that is manifested as clay idols of Eesar and Gaur is worth admiring. Another noticeable thing would be the women, who beautifully adorn themselves with vibrant outfits and traditional jewellery. The festivals add spark to Rajasthan tourism by attracting people from foreign lands who are inclined towards culture.

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The belief working behind the Gangaur festival is  the hope that the worship would bring harmony in the lives of married women. Serving as the well-known Rajasthan attractions, the festival is equally important for unmarried girls as they get a good husband.

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The Gangaur festival in Jaipur is celebrated with great fervor in the royal families of Rajasthan as well. Magnificent human size idols of Eesar Gangaur are placed in the City Palace and other royal houses for worshiping. The royal women also get mehandi (Heena) applied on their hands by expert professionals.

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The most exciting part of the festival is when women take out the Gangaur processions on the street, followed by immersing these idols in river or lake. The euphonic voice of ladies while singing the traditional songs, dedicated to the Gods is mesmerizing.

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Pic: Google

While in Rajasthan, especially Jaipur, don’t miss to sweeten your tongues with finger licking “Ghewar”, a sweet dish that specially being distributed on the occasion.
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Four-day Rajasthan Divas Festival to mark state’s foundation day inaugurated in Jaipur

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‘Rajasthan Festival’, organised by Department of Tourism, Rajasthan kicked off from 27 to 30 March 2017. The four-day event is witnessing a variety of rich cultural events to celebrate the historical establishment of the majestic state of Rajasthan.

On 27 March, the Opening Ceremony began with the lighting of the Rajasthan Day Torch. The finals of the Rural Sports as well as the Cultural Extravaganza by the well known theatre director, Bhanu Bharti,  held at the SMS Stadium.

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On 27 and 28 March, a Cycle Marathon by the Sports Department was held at the SMS Stadium. On the same day ‘Jaipur Kathak Samaroh’ by Jaipur Kathak Kendra in association with the Jaipur Development Authority (JDA) are organized at the Central Park. ‘The Theatre of E. Alkazi’ (Exhibition) will be displayed at Jawahar Kala Kendra (JKK) from 27 March to 5 April. On 28 March, there will be a Tattoo Show by Border Security Force (BSF) and Rajasthan Police at the JDA Polo Ground.

On the next two days – 28 and 29 March there will be ‘Bhajans’,  ‘Qawwalis’, ‘Gurbani’, ‘Vedic’ Chanting at a temple, a church and a gurudwara. The events will be organized in association with the Sanskrit Academy. A Children’s Film Festival has also been organised in a centrally located multiplex – Inox Crystal Palm. Similarly, International Festival of Short Films on Culture & Tourism will be held at Indralok Auditorium.

Mohit Chauhan in the show Music Ka Maha Muqqabla

On 29 March, an exciting Air Fly-Past and Air Warrior Drill by the Indian Air Force (IAF) will be held. Furthermore, the Army Pageant will showcase Trick Riding, Massed Pipes and Drums Show will be held by the Indian army at the JDA Polo Ground. In the evening, renowned Bangladeshi fashion designer, Bibi Russell will present a Heritage Fashion Show. Later the well-known bollywood singer Mohit Chauhan will perform at 7 pm at the mega-concert at the Albert Hall.

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On 30 March, the ‘Rajasthan Day Celebration’ will witness an attractive Projection Mapping Show dedicated to the people of Rajasthan at the Vidhansabha, Janpath. On 30 and 31 March, Gangaur procession will also take place at their traditional route from Tripoliya Gate to the Talkatora.

 

Rajasthan Divas Festival kicked off with grand opening at SMS Stadium Jaipur

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‘Rajasthan Festival’ began with a grand cultural extravaganza choreographed by none other than the well-known Director and Playwright, Bhanu Bharti. More than 300 hundred folk artistes from the State and all over the country gave a scintillating performance. The event was organized by the Department of Tourism today at the Sawai Man Singh Stadium in Jaipur.

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The Governor of Rajasthan, Shri Kalyan Singh was the Chief Guest of the event. The Special Guests for the event were the Sports Minister, Shri Gajendra Singh Khimsar and Minister of State for Tourism, Smt. Krishnendra Kaur (Deepa).

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The 110-minute programme included Mass Band display by Army, Air Force as well as Rajasthan Police. The songs performed  by the bands were; Dharti Dhoran RiPal Pal Dil ke Paas and Jaha Dal- Dal Pe by Rajasthan Police Central Band; Vande Mataram, Chak De India, Jai Ho by Air Force Band, Pallu Latke Hai, Classical Kathak , Medley of Hindi songs like, Mere Sapno Ki Rani by Army Band and Sare Jahan Se Acha by combined performance by all the three bands.

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Performances choreographed by Bhanu Bharti included Shiv Mudra (Nagpur) followed by dance sequence — Chakhri, Gair, Chari, Dhapchang, Dhamaal (Haryana), Paika (Jharkhand) and Mewasi (Gujarat). These performances were presented to the tune of Langa Mangiyaar. Other performances on the occasion were include – Bhadoi Shikla (Assam), Kathak Jaipur and Chhabeli Dance(Uttarakhand), Lai Haroba (Manipur). The performance will conclude with Holi Dance by contingent of all artistes.

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The Rajasthan Divas Torch was brought by winners of the ‘Rajasthan Day Marathon’ from the Divisional Headquarters of the State. It first reached Ambedkar Circle and then Amar Jawan Jyoti and finally at the SMS Stadium where the Chief Guest and special guests lighted the Festival Cauldron.

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The evening also saw the finals of the ‘Rumal Jhapatta’ and Tug-of-War as a part of the Rural Sports Competition.

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During the opening day festivities the divisional tableaus were displayed at Janpath along with folk performances on both sides of the road. Grand fireworks display was also a part of the exciting programme.

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Jaipur Kathak Samaroh at Central Park

The 2-day ‘Jaipur Kathak Samaroh’ began at 8 pm at the Central Park. The Chief Guest for the occasion were the Additional Chief Secretary, Tourism, Art & Culture, Government of Rajasthan, Mr. N.C. Goyal. There were performances of ‘Devi Stuti’, ‘Kesariya Balam Padharo Mhare Desh’, ‘Chaturang’ and ‘Thumri’. While ‘Devi Stuti’ and ‘Kesariya Balam Padharo Mhare Desh’ were presented by Jaipur Kathak Kendra under the direction of Dr. Rekha Thakar; ‘Chaturang’ and ‘Thumri’ were presented under the direction of Harish Gangani from Shri Ram Bhartiya Kala Kendra.

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‘Devi Stuti’ showcased the victory of good over evil when Goddess Durga slaughters Asur. This was followed by ‘Kesariya Balam Padharo Mhare Desh’. The performance presented the moods of the women of Rajasthan. A part of the lives of these women go through separation when their heroes go abroad and fight in war. The performance showcased how beauty emerges from the various activities that the women do when their men come back from war, like getting dressed up, get excited and involve themselves in auspicious activities around the house.

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Ajmer Airport to begin operating flights from 15th August, 2017

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Ajmer and Pushkar are the major tourism cities of Rajasthan that attract thousands of tourists, devotees, celebrities as well as foreign dignitaries from across the world. It is due to the popular Annual Cattle (Pushkar) fair, Brahma Temple in Pushkar and Dargah of Moinuddin Chishti known as Ajmer Sharif Dargah in Ajmer. Although the cities are very well connected by Road and Rail, but the convenience of air travel demanded an airport in Ajmer. Ajmer airport in Kishangarh was, however, long due since 1982. The good news is that it is in the last phase of its completion now!

Sources added security measures like scanners and security doors are already installed in the airport and terminal is ready for passengers. A team of Jaipur airport authority had also visited to verify the standard and quality of services. Ajmer airport has already got the international code by international civil aviation organisation and it is also decided that Rajasthan Armed Core (RAC) will be responsible for security of the airport.

The airport will tentatively start trial this year in mid-July and possibly services will start from August 15 with the maiden flight to Delhi.

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The airport will connect other cities like Jaipur, Chennai, Mumbai and other destinations. Some companies have already assured of providing services from Ajmer in a charter plane with 70-80 seats.

Happy Flying !!

NAVRAS 2017: Experience Music, Dance and Theatre in JKK Jaipur

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The Pink City of Jaipur and its theatre and art connoisseurs are soon going to have a delightful dose of performing art, dance and music! A super hit theatre fest in 2016, NAVRAS comes back to Jaipur with even more enthralling performances  rife with social messages through entertainment.  Jawahar Kala Kendra is presenting the second edition of its Performing Arts Festival, Navras 2017 !
The dates of the festival are out- it’s 18th to 26th March 🙂 

Check out the program for Navras 2017! Bookings will open on 15th March. Tickets will be available at JKK reception.

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Various popular artists like Shubha Mudgal, Zila Khan (Vocals), Rajendra Panchal (Theatre), Aditi Mangaldas (Dance) and more are participating in the festival.

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Get ready to have an amazing, enlightening and entertaining dose of performing arts during Navras 2017 in Jawahar Kala Kendra, Jaipur!

Images via: Jawahar Kala Kendra.

Smashing colors, melodious folk songs and dancing on drumbeats- Rajasthan’s Holi is unique

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The vibrant festival of colors – Holi is back this month (12th and 13th March 2017). This festival is celebrated in all of India, heralding the arrival of spring and giving adieu to winter. Spring season symbolizes a new beginning, fresh and optimistic start to life.

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The colorful festival of Holi has a mythological significance attached to it.

DAY 1 Sunday (12th March 2017):

On the eve of Holi, people light bonfire to mark the occasion of evil spirits in a ritual called Holika Dahan. Prahlad, a young follower of Lord Vishnu was forcefully taken into the burning fire but escaped the fire which proved to be a miracle. This was thus regarded as the triumph over evil.

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DAY 2  Monday (13th March 2017):

The next morning, people celebrate the victory with vibrant colors, singing, dancing, eating delicacies and celebrate the joyous moment of life by socializing with everyone. People dance to the beats of drums, sing, play games, drink bhaang and enjoy the festival in full energy and spirit.

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The royal courts of Jaipur and Udaipur in Rajasthan play this festival in their unique style by throwing colors with tourists and visitors from all around the world.  The entire region is painted in colors as no one minds getting colorful on this day as people shout – Bura Na Mano, Holi Hai!

Special Summer Train between Hyderabad and Jaipur to begin from March 10

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The summers in India means holiday time! To ease the pressure of travelling every year IRCTC introduces special train during summer season. To begin the season’s special trains, the South Central Railways (SCR) has announced a weekly Summer Special Train from Hyderabad to Jaipur from March 10.

As per the released schedule, the summer special train will make 34 trips till July. The train number (02731/02732) will originate from Hyderabad and halt at Nanded among few other Marathwada cities.

The special train will leave from Hyderabad every Friday at 4.25 pm and reach Nanded at 12.05 am before reaching Jaipur at around 6.25am on Sunday. In its return journey, the train will leave from Jaipur every Sunday at 03.00 pm and will reach Hyderabad via Akola and Nanded on Tuesday at 02.00 am.

The 18 coaches train will cover the following stations- .Nizamabad, Mudkhed, Nanded, Purna, Basmat, Washim, Akola, Khandwa, Bhopal, Ujjain, Ratlam, Ajmer and Mandar Junction.