Folk Dance Paika
Paika is one of the very famous dance forms of Jharkhand performed by the Munda community. The Mundas originally came from North West India, but later moved to the Chota Nagpur Plateau. They began their settlements here by clearning forests. They were the first tribal people to resist colonization. The Paika Dance of the Mundas symbolises the great war of their community against the British.
It is a dance form where martial arts are mixed with some other dance steps. This is why the dance form is only performed by the male members of the society. It is said that this type of dance form was performed by the people known as Paikas in ancient times. Paikas were the group of peoples or soldiers who served their lives for the safety of the kingdom. This is the main reason why this dance forms known by Paika.
The dancers hold bows, arrows, spears, swords and shields and the dance is, in fact a stylized worship of arms. The martial character of the dance is retained by the use of the shield and sword. The dancers display their skills in handling the sword and shield and the dance reaches a climax with the fast beat of the Madal. Previously the dance was performed to welcome guests, but nowadays it is also performed on different happy occasions like weddings. The Dussehra celebrations remain incomplete without this dance. Besides their protective chest blades, the dances also wear colourful headgear and bells around their ankles. This captivating dance form, which is indigenous to the Mundas, is a martial art with variations throughout Jharkhand.
It is performed by men in such a way that it automatically attracted the eyes toward the dance which is performed with greater risk. There are swords and shields are included in the performance time. Men used to hold sword in one hand and in other hand they used to hold shields.. It is mainly performed for the purpose of welcoming their guests during any occasion time and the dance adds more glaze to the festivities.
Musical Instrument Used In Paika Dance:-
Paika in Jharkhand is accompanied by the melodious music of Dhol,Dhak, Nagara, Nardingha, Bheir, Shehnai, Ranbheri and many more. All the instruments being played simultaneously add an extra loadstone to the whole occasion.
Costumes of Paika Dance:-
As it is one of the marital dance form, it is needed for the performers to wear the safety means to protect themselves during performance time. They are covered with the plates which are placed on their chests; wear a mask to protect the head and also cover their ankles by wearing bells. The whole ambience during the performance of this dance form is very charming. The dancers wearing their colorful robes along with the local tribes create fascinating scenery.
Picture of Paika Dance :-
Video's of Paika Dance :-