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Emar Tharor Arati

By Rebati Mohan Sinha, Mumbai

Adding a pinch of salt and spice to Mrs. Ranita’s article ‘Aarati in Emar Thar’ to enhance the existing taste of reading. Once I read in a Bishnupriya Manipuri monthly, that a group of elderly people objected aarati performers, performing Aarati in Emar thar at Sadhu Thakur`s Ashram at Tarapur, Silchar. They even challenged their propriety by saying as to who has allowed them to perform in the malthep. There was about to be a commotion between them, and the elderly group ultimately left in a huff.

But this time Ranita has found so much of changes there, which is really a positive sign. Mr. Jogendra Kumar Sinha, Retd. High School Head Master and President, Sanskriti Parishad, NBMM, has published a book (Emar tharor) of Aarati at Silchar. His work has been appreciated by all. Mrs. Sandhya Mukherjee and her party might be using the copy of the same book for their aarati. I am also having a copy of that book which, the writer himself had sent to me years ago. One or two of Emar tharor aratis are now performed almost in every villages.

Who says, there is no changes? Now we can say, that transition is taking place in our society. Here I would like to share something about ‘aarati stealing’, some one might have heard it but I am sure most of the young generation might not have heard about it. We call it ‘aarati chorkorani’. Let me brief it in a simple way: the aarati performers of one village stealthily enter to a ‘maalthep’ of another village in the wee hours of the day, while the villagers are caught unaware, as they are in deep sleep and start performing the Mongolaarati i.e., beating of drums and singing. Hearing this, the villagers rush to the maalthep with their music instruments to encounter them. On completion of the event, there would be a feast(bandara) arranged for the performers in the maalthep. Similarly in the evening also aarati chorkorani is very much in vogue. But regret to say that now a days these aaratis are scarcely heard in maaltheps other than the big utsavs, like Basanti Puja.

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