It is for this reason that I am calling for people to send me Adivasi stories that I will then post on this blog. Please submit short stories to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is a continuation of the Preserving Our Heritage Writing Workshops that I conducted in 2018 and 2019 in India. To learn more click on this button.
Friday 27 March 2020
Sarhul (Flower Festival), Ba/ Baha Portob (in Mundari, Santhali, Ho). Celebrated today. Owing to lockdown no usual processions of revellers in town this year.
Sher Shah Suri in 1538 stormed the fort of Rohtasgarh in Behar on the day of Sarhul festival. Milkmaid going in and out of Fort told the Afghan soldiers a secret. That Oraon men are usually drunk on this day. So the soldiers attacked the fort to capture it from the Kurukh speaking Oraons on Sarhul day. It was Singi Dai (सिंगी दाई), D to be pronounced as in (the), who along with her friends, Champa and Kaili led the fight, dressed as men. Mighty Afghans did not believe until told by the milkmaid to watch the Kurukh women fighters washing their faces by both the hands in the stream, as against men who normally use one hand to wash their faces.
Another example is this lovely article I found published in The Hindu in 2015.
Please, click botton to read:
One day there was no rice at home and no food was being cooked. But the household help boy found the leaves of the tree at the back of their house. It is eaten by all tribals in Chota Nagpur, and is known by various names, as Munga, Sajna, Sooti, (drumsticks) etc. and is considered a medicinal plant and tree. Because its leaves, flowers and long green fruits are eaten as vegetable and its barks and even roots are medicinal. Leaves are considered good for controlling blood pressure. When it was served to the old couple after boiling it, either a visitor or his helper boy was said to have declared, ‘this old man said such a long prayer even for a small portion of this green leaves as a whole meal!’
Also see what Ferdinand Hahn wrote early in the 1900s about the Oraon celebration of the Sarhul Festival: