Delhi Travel
Delhi Travel
Delhi Travel
Delhi Travel
Delhi Travel

Chitra - Vichitra Mela

This fair, one of the largest, purely Adivasi (tribal) fairs attended by around 60,000 to 70,000 tribal people. It takes place every year in the village of Gunbhakhari in Sabarkantha district, very near the borders of Rajasthan. It is held a fortnight after Holi, the festival of colours.

The site of the fair is attractive as the temple overlooks the rivers Sabarmati, Akul and Vyakul. The name of the fair is derived from Chitravirya and Vichitraviraya, the sons of King Shantanu, who are believed to have lived here and been cured of diseases which afflicted them.

The fair attracts large numbers of Bhils (tribals) who come from all the surrounding districts using every imaginable form of transport. The Garasis and Bhil tribals dress in their customary colourful costumes. The costume of the men generally consists of a blue shirt, dhoti and a red or saffron turban.

Women don ghaghras (embroidered skirts) which have a circumference of as much as 20 yards, and are covered from head to foot with ornate and heavy silver jewellery. They use liquid kumkum (vermilion) to colour their cheeks and lips a brilliant red, while their eyes are outlined with kajal (kohl).

Every group that comes to the fair carries its own drum making the atmosphere come alive with the incessant beat of numerous drums. The fair also acts as a venue for betrothals, as tribal youth use this opportunity to find their future spouses.

The Chitra Vichitra Fair at Poshina (Gunbhakhari) is held in the month of march every year. This fair takes place in the village of Gunbhakhari in Sabarkantha District, very near the borders of Rajasthan. It is held a fortnight after the Holi Festival. The fair site is attractive, as the temple which is its focus overlooks the rivers Sabarmati, Akul and Vyakul. It is one of the largest purely adivasis fairs of the border region and attracts large numbers of Bhils who come from all the surrounding districts using every imaginable form of transport. The name of the fair is derived from Chitravirya and Vichitravirya, the sons of King Shantanu, who are believed to have lived here and been cured of diseases which afflicted them.

The Garasia and Bhill adivasis dress in their customary colourful costumes. the men's costume generally consists of a blue shirt, dhoti and a red or saffron fenta or turban. Women don ghagharas which have a circumference of as much as 20 ioyards, and are covered from head to foot with ornate and heavy silver jewellery, using liquid kumkum or vermilion to colour their cheeks and lips a brilliant red, while their eyes are outlined with kajal.

Every group visiting the fair carries its own drum, so that the atmosphere comes alive with the incessant beat of numerous drums. The women sing folk songs, and everyone dances. The dancing and drumming continue for hours until everyone is exhausted. Over a hundred stalls hold food and drink, and sweets of various kinds. Silver ornaments can be bought and household articles as well. Here, as in other fairs, there is a giant wheel, and a merry-go-round which never cease to spin.


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