A spectacular Shigmo float parade dazzled thousands in Panaji today. The thunder of drums, the brilliance of colour and a rich treasure of Hindu culture and mythology unfolded along the 18 June Road in a parade of diverse categories including floats, “romtamell”, folk and individual displays.
The parade opened with the traditional Goan dances of “romtamell” and “ghoddemodnni”. Saffron headgear (‘fetto’) was the permanent leitmotif of the all “romtamell” troups’ attire. They danced in synchronicity, waving their gaily-decorated staffs and totem poles the tips of which were adorned with flower-garlands and sometimes, mango leaves. But their singing was drowned in the roar of drums so huge, they had to be carted on wheels. For the romtamell groups, it is more the merrier; there were about 350 persons participating in the Banglaleshwar group of Madkai. Tiny tots in huge saffron headgear, dancing freely along with adult participants, was pleasing to the eye.
There were 66 floats in today’s parade. Also, 10 “romtamell”, 28 folk and 24 individual entries. Size overwhelmed most at today’s Shigmo. If the mythological characters in the floats were huge, the rich myriad colours, the mechanisation and a variety of historical themes added appeal to the floats. Lord Krishna and Balram eating curds, the fight between Lord Shiva and Shankasur, and Lord Vishnu with Sudarshan chakra on finger, were some of the opening floats.
But the “Vaibhav Rahu Chandra” by the Mashel Nagrik Samiti was towering and splendorous. Chandra went riding on an ornamented chariot pulled by two reindeers. The massive, decapitated and bleeding head of Rahu followed a float behind. For special effects, there was eerie laughter accompanying these floats.
While the Mala Million Club depicted Lord Ram transforming Ahilya from stone to woman again, the Bhatlem Cricketers Club depicted a huge Hanuman ripping open his chest to show Lord Rama and Sita embedded on his heart.
Starting in the later hours of the evening, the Shigmo parade has an added advantage of using special light effects on their floats. There were other floats depicting “Kalyug – Rakshas Raj”, a flying Hanuman holding a beheaded “asura”, Lord Vishnu in the mouth of a mammoth fish and others.
In the individual category, there were some eye-catching entries. There was Mahakali dressed in brilliant indigo holding a beheaded Maheshasur in one of her six hands. She also wielded a ‘trishul’ and knives in the others. Mahakali wore a gold bodice and had a huge protruding red tongue. Skulls and severed, bloodied limbs hung from her waist. There were a number of Hanumans, mighty maces balanced on their shoulders. There was the Maratha warrior king, Shivaji, resplendent in gold robe and a big garland of big pink pearls around his neck. A 10-headed Ravana roamed menacingly alongside ascetics like Sant Tukaram and Sai Baba. The lone Osama Bin Laden was disallowed entry into the Shigmo parade. He was told he did not fit into the culture of the land.
The Chief Minister, Mr Pratapsingh Rane presented the Adpai Yuvak Sangh with the late Srimati Putu Naik rolling trophy for the best tableau in the city Shigmo parade, during a special prize distribution function, held at the Azad Maidan, tonight.
He also presented the Dongri Shigmotsav Samiti and the Siddhivinayak Kala Sangh with the late Krishna Narvekar rolling trophy and late Laxmibai Silimkhan rolling trophy for winning the top prizes, in the Romtamell and the folk dance categories, respectively. The city mayor, Mr Tony Rodrigues also attended the function.
Speaking on the occasion, the Chief Minister praised the efforts as well as the techniques used in the creation of tableaux which participated in the parade. He also suggested that live participation along with the mannequins on the tableaux would make their presentation more impressive.
Earlier, the chairman of the Panaji Shigmotsav Samiti 2007, Mr Shrinivas Dempo, in his welcome address said that the Shigmo event fulfills the aim of the committee to preserve and promote the Goan art and culture, which is the real heritage of the region.
The Chief Minister also felicitated three Goan folklore artistes, Shiva Gaonkar (bhajan singer/ harmonium and ‘ghumat’ player), E M Joaosinho Cardozo (tiatrist) and Balkrishna Parab (tabla maker), on the occasion.
Impressive fireworks illuminated the venue of the prize distribution.
By Staff Reporter
Sunday, March 11, 2007
Posted By : Staff Reporter, Panjim, Goa on 12/03/2007