The Uttarayani fair is an amalgamation of culture and fun to entertain the audience of the fair. It is also an important way of communication to a large population and thus political workers often use it to convey their messages to the people. It is one of the biggest fairs organised in Bageshwar District of Uttarakhand. It is observed at the Makar Sankranti Festival that is held on the 14th of January every year. It is celebrated in both the regions Kumaon and Garhwal of Uttarakhand.
The fair gives a proper share of entertainment and information with a variety of activities taking place along with food and crafts of the state. Uttarayani Fair is one of the most popular fairs in India. It started in Bageshwar but now has spread in various cities in and out of Uttarakhand. The festival is an opportunity for the locals to showcase their culture, heritage, dance, and music.
The Uttarayani Fair had been a witness for several political and social revolutions. In 1921, under the leadership of Pandit Badri Dutt Pandey, several activists had revolted for the elimination of Coolie Begar(Bonded Labour). 1929 was the same year when Mahatma Gandhi visited the Bageshwar District of Uttarakhand.
During the fair, local artists perform on their regional songs and display several folk dance forms such as Chholiya, Jhoras, Chancharis and many more.
Chholiya. Chholiya is a folk dance form that belongs to Kumaun region of Uttarakhand. It is performed by a group of men and women dressed in colourful attire.
Jhoras. It is also named as Kumaoni Jhora which is a Pahari Jhora dance form performed by a group of women while singing their folk songs in Kumaoni languages.
If you are at Uttarayani Fair, you will get insights into their lifestyle and one of the major things is to explore the local shops at fair. Different household and handicraft items are sold here. Some of them are casks, bamboo items, baskets, copper pots and many more.
This ancient temple is one of the most popular temples in Uttarakhand. Every year the temple witnesses a huge number of Hindu pilgrimages to seek the blessings from Lord Shiva. It is situated at the confluence of Sarayu and Gomati rivers. The architectural marvel can be seen in the beautiful temple which is designed in basic North-Indian Nagar architecture. During the Shivaratri, the temple looks more enthusiastic and cheerful.
By Air. The nearest airport is the Pantnagar Airport which is located in the Kumaon Region. From there you will either have to catch a taxi or get some other means of transportation to reach your destination.
By Road. The connectivity via road network is quite good. The well-connected highways are NH 108, NH 109, NH 121, etc. Both buses and taxis are available at regular intervals of time. You can also travel via your own vehicle.
By Rail. The Uttarakhand railways department is maintaining 16 big and small railway stations alike which connect Uttarakhand with major cities such as Lucknow, Delhi, Kolkata, Pantnagar, etc. All of these acts as contributing factors in making the whole traveling experience much easier and more joyful.
14 January 2020
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