Bhuwa Naach- Traditional dance from the Farwest
Bhuwa Parwa is native to the hilly areas of far-western region, But the festivities and rituals differ from one village to another.
Tikha, Gholtada, Bagthanta, Lekthanta, Daud, Sanagaun, Kalena, Khirsain areas of Doti district celebrate Bhuwa Naach. There is a general belief that if the dance does not take place, the locals will have to face negative consequences.
Although the festival’s provenance is unknown, it takes place after the harvest season, the time when the villagers are free from their agricultural chores. The preparations for the processions begin a month ahead.
Bhuwa Naach is believed to be associated with war, It is believed to be some sort of a war dance. Many also believe that the dance form replicates the military exercise from the time of the Baise-Chaubisey Rajya, when Nepal was divided into many princely states.
Bhuwa Naach is also taken as a celebration to spread goodwill among different ethnic groups residing in the region. People from Aauji community play instruments, to which, the members of the Chettri community, clad in traditional wear, dance to the procession.
Originally 16 instruments were played for Bhuwa Naach but now many instruments are not used. The locals, who once feared that the dance would be extinct in a few years, have now found hope, as even young boys and girls have started to take part and enjoy the festival.
Earlier, only the older people were aware of the history and culture of Doti, but now, the younger generation is also interested to learn about their culture and heritage. Apart from Bhuwa Naach, there are other rituals observed during the festival. The festivities, which can last from a week to a month, depending on different villages, ends after the wood, chopped on the first day of the festival, is burnt.
During the time of the festivities, men and women play Deuda, another popular traditional dance native to the far-western region.