24 Jul 2023

Monsoon's Indifference In Vindhya Snatches Sweetness Of Kajali

Mirzapur: Kajali of Vindhya region, which is famous in the country and abroad for its unique cultural traditions and rain songs in Sawan, has to bear the brunt of monsoon's indifference.

Kajali is also waiting for monsoon. There is flood-like situation in many parts of the country but Vindhya has received scant rainfall in the monsoon season so far. While the possibility of drought has taken away the happiness and peace of the local people, the folk culture is also being affected by this natural phenomenon. 

The voices of the famous Mirzapuri Kajali have fallen silent due to the possibility of drought. There is strange silence in the villages. The unique tradition of inviting married girls to their parents' homes to play Kajali in the month of Sawan has received a severe blow. This year people are hesitating to invite their daughters.

In view of the possibility of drought this year in Mirzapur, concern is clearly visible among the local people. Normally these days, the sound of Dhunmuniya dance and traditional Kajali of women, drenched in drizzle of Sawan, are heard far and wide. But there is a strange silence this time. There is no trace of Kajali anywhere.

Monsoon has given a big blow to Kajali which is already struggling for its survival in this age when influence of western culture is increasing. Monsoon and Kajli have a strange relationship like the moon and the sea. Kajali cannot be imagined without rain. Kajri singer Amar Nath Shukla says that when there is greenery and water all around, then Kajri is sung. 

Kajari or Kajali is a famous folk song of Eastern Uttar Pradesh. The origin of Kajri is believed to be in Mirzapur situated on the banks of the Ganges in eastern Uttar Pradesh. This is a folk song of the rainy season. It is sung in the month of Sawan. 

Kajari is sung during the rainy season usually late June to September when lush greenery is around and agricultural work begins again.

It is often used to describe the longing of a maiden for her lover as the black monsoon clouds come hanging in the summer skies, and the style is notably sung during the rainy season.

Kajri derives from the word kajra or kohl, and is sung in the Awadhi and Bhojpuri regions.

There is a lot of promotion of Kajri songs in Uttar Pradesh and Banaras. The main folk songs of Braj region are Jhoola, Hori Rasiya. Jhula is sung in Sawan and Hori is sung in Falgun.

Since ancient times, Mirzapur district of Uttar Pradesh has been the center of faith in the form of Shaktipeeth of Maa Vindhyavasini. Shaktiswarupa Devi is praised in most of the ancient Kajaris. Today, the subject matter of Kajri is very wide, but the singing of Kajri starts with Devi Geet only.

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