The beautiful & enchanting land is
located in the
north bank of the river Brahmaputra(Burlung Butur) in the state of
The history of gory struggle dates back to 1980's in the
name of self-determination under the leadership of
There are 5 main ethnic dance forms among the Bodos, performed in different occasions with great pomp & show in their colourful hand woven traditional attire.
This is a special religious dance form performed on the occasion of the Kherai Puja; one of the traditional festivals celebrated once in a year in the month of January. It has two classifications called: Primary Kherai dance and Secondary Kherai dance. The Primary Kherai dance is further classified to 16 styles or moves; wherein each move is dedicated in respect to a deity. The secondary Kherai Dance is also further classified to 9 styles or moves representing different forms of Pujas or rituals.
Literally "Haba" means "Marriage" and in turn "Ha" means "The Soil or The World" and "Ba" means "Carry on Back" while Janai means "to be". To be precise, Marriage in their view is Carrying the World on the Back. This Haba Janai is a typical Bodo marriage dance performed on the auspicious occasion with much joy for the well-being of the couple.
Bagurumba It is the most graceful, beautiful and attractive traditional dance of the Bodos specially performed by the women to the tune of the song and musical instruments being played by the men. This dance is associated with merry-making and is performed on all occasions. This dance form has also been acknowledged as national dance of India since 1957.
This dance form is performed during the Spring Festival to welcome the New Year which falls in the month of April. The Bodos follow the Bengali Calendar and the word "Bwisagu" means the first month of the year. The Bodos of all ages gather in groups to perform this dance from one house to the other delivering the wishes for the new year; to the tune of different songs accompanied by the traditional musical instruments and the household gives a prize. The collected prize is than use for the celebration and merry-making to welcome the New Year.
This dance forms signifies the daily social lifestyle of the Bodos.
The Bodos belonged to the warrior group and this dance form was performed before the men proceeded to the war field. This dance is specially performed as a prayer to the almighty to bestow power and victory to the men.
From time immemorial the Bodo women weaves their own traditional dresses at home; which forms a part of their daily chores. They are expert weavers with artistic sensibility and include cotton textiles of various colours and silk fabrics of the finest quality. So, it is natural that each and every household have their own handloom. The traditional garments woven by them with great enthusiasm and floral work are: Dokhona, Fali, Indisi, Aronai, Rege-regang, Janji Khanai Fali, Gamsa etc. They also weave furnishings like- curtain, bedsheet, quilt cover, cushion cover etc. The yellow coloured dokhona remains the favourite among the women since it compliments their complexion.
It is the traditional wrap around worn by the Bodo women folk which is 1.5mts wide & 2.5 mts in length.
It is a hand-woven muffler with traditional floral design and found in variety of colours. It is also used to gift the guest as a respect of welcome.
Fali is a long piece of cloth used by the woman to cover the bosom. They weave it in different floral designs and colours; and match it with the dokhona. The familiar one is Rege-regang.
It is like a dhoti used by the man to wear.
Eri silk populary known as "Endi" among the Bodos; is wooly white silk and often referred to as the Ahimsa silk or fabric of peace as the process does not involve the killing of the silk worm. It is widely used by the monks and the people who practice absolute Non- violence. The Eri silk comes from the worm Samia Cynthia Ricini commonly found in North East India. It is reared, spun and woven by the women folk at home contributing to the family economy. They weave different products like: scarf, shawl, dokhana, fali etc. Eri silk spun mill named "Indi Lu" has been established at Kokrajhar which has given new height to the product due to its soft texture, durability, moisture absorbent quality and other natural properties. The firm produces many modernized fabrics like: Jackets, Shawls and blankets and furnishing like- Curtain, bed cover, Cushion cover, quilts etc. The Eri silk is being promoted as eco- friendly and natural product and so is gaining popularity world-wide.
It is an elongated drum, often hung on the waist and is beaten to produce music using both the hands. It is made of wood and the beaten surface is made of goat skin.
It is a mouth organ (flute), beautifully crafted from a slim bamboo and has 5 holes. It is played by blowing in air with the mouth and the rhythm of the fingers. This special instrument is popularly played by the cow-boys while grazing cows.
It is a traditional Violin with 4 strings used by the Bodos. It is played by a small bow made of bamboo strip tied with a small bunch of horse's tail hair; which serves as strings. The Sijou Bifang's (Euphorbia) log is the best material for making Serja.
It is a basin like musical instrument with equal size and shape beaten together in pair. This instrument is symbolic to the ones used by the musicians of authentic Indian music.
Gongana is the Jew's harp and is a kind of small wind instrument used by the Bodos. Traditionally it is made of Bamboo but nowadays metallic Gonganas are also available.
It is made of wood in a half moon shape having some round suforations on its body to adjust the metallic dices. These dices produce harmonious musical sound while being played.
A bamboo clapper with two internodes and three nodes; the nodes are in the upper, middle and lower end respectively. The lower nodes save the clapper from completely splitting away.
It's a stringed Bodo musical instrument similar to Indian "Bina".
The Bodo cuisine is assorted; mostly being herbal and has its own taste and aroma. They prepare different snacks, starters, curries and tandoories in their own style and have a very good appetite with rice being the staple food. Most of the snacks are prepared out of powdered rice and lentils. Snacks prepared out of rice powder are: Pitha Laodum (Rice cake), Sithao, Thaoni Sithao, Laroo, Mwider Khwma etc. They also prepare coconut Ladoos, Suji Ladoos and Kharai- Bhaja (Mixture of different grams, rice and dry fruits) especially prepared in Domasi festival.
Oma (Pork) and Bedor (Meat). It is the favourite delicacy of the Bodos. The meat is either dry fried or smoked to serve as starter and can also be prepared as curry with many herbal leaves as main course. The traditional way of preserving the meat is to dry it in the sun, which ultimately gives a unique taste and is prepared with different recipe.
Napham is a unique dish in Bodo cuisine. It is made by grinding smoked fish, specific leafy vegetables, masala powder and the mixture is allowed to age in a sealed bamboo cylinder. Thereafter, aged napham could be fried with spring onion along with spicy masala or can also be boiled to serve as soup.
Onla is a gravy curry prepared from rice powder and slices of bamboo shoots cooked lightly with khardwi (soda prepared by drying the papaya pulp and then burning it to ashes. Later the ash is filtered to give a liquid soda) and spices. Chicken or pork can be added to taste.
This dish is prepared out of Urad dal or Black Gram with an addition of Kharwi (homemade liquid soda) and chicken to taste.
Emphou (Castor Worm) is either dry fried with masala as a starter or prepared as Onlakharwi.
A bitter gravy that is made from dried jute leaves. Pork or fresh water fish can be cooked together to generate a distinct tastes. Narzi gravy tastes like Japanese sea weed soup. It is a unique dish which is very favourite among the Bodos.
It is a chicken soup prepared out of different herbal vegetables and put to boil.
Ju Mai is a homemade rice wine prepared by the women for all occasions and is of two types: Gishi (wet) and Gwran (dry). Gishi is brewed by fermenting rice with an addition of different herbs. Gwran is produced by distillation - it tastes like Japanese sake. The Bodos examine the strength of the wine by throwing a cup into the fire. A flash of fire indicates strong wine.
It is a rice beer prepared from a particular sticky rice intentionally for ceremonies and festivals like Bwisagu and Domasi. This liquor is prepared out of sticky rice which is cooked and amou (agent for fermentation) is mixed. It is than put in a container with a long bamboo strainer being placed in the middle. As the mixed rice ages, the beer is collected in the strainer which is than preserved in a bottle. This beer taste sweet and is very strong.
All the handicrafts of the Bodos are designed and made out of bamboo and are used on daily basis. Some of them have up as a trade of preparing these items and so are readily available in the market.
This is specially used for catching fish.
It is in the shape of a pot and is used to hold the fish.
It is a hand-fan made out of bamboo to give a cool breeze in summer.
It is a big round plate like structure closely woven out of the neatly cut strips of bamboo specially used to clean paddy, rice or any other cereals.
It is a net like round plate woven out of the bamboo strips like Songgrai but with evenly distributed holes. It is specially used to segregate the rice of the pounded paddy.
It is also like a Sandri but the holes here are finer and are used to strain the rice powder used to make rice-cake and other snacks.