BHUBANESHWAR: Tiger dance, an old traditional dance, is on the verge of extinction in India's eastern Orissa.
The dance is generally performed during the Thakurani Jatra when a group of three to twenty persons clad in the tiger costumes dance to the tune of
The dancers paint their bodies in yellow and black to look like tigers and please the goddess Thakurani. But the dancers like Bighnesh Naik lament the fact that the government is showing apathy towards this dance form.
“The government is least interested in coming here and watching this dance form. In the next 10-20 years this dance form will vanish it needs to be
seen,” said Naik.
While others like Siman Chal blamed its extinction on the rising costs.
“Getting our bodies painted which earlier used to cost anywhere between Rs.2000-3000 ($40.31-$60.45) few years back is now costing us Rs.6000 upwards ($120.94). Besides this there is extra expenditure on food and lodging,” said Chal.
The dancers claim that they dance to appease the goddess and the locals get a chance to watch this amazing procession from the street corner.
The dancers generally train for months before they are allowed to dance during the festival. The training generally requires money, which can only be funded by the government.
With the governmental help not coming, this rare dance form will soon vanish if nothing concrete is done. AGENCIES