Narender Reddy Patlola
Although Telangana became a separate State just five years ago after decades of struggle, the region is rich in art and culture for more than 5000 years.
It emerged as the foremost centre of culture in the Indian subcontinent during the benevolent regimes of Hindu Kakatiya, Muslim Qutab, Shahi and Asaf Jahi dynasties, also known as the Nizams of Hyderabad.
Their patronage and interest for arts and culture transformed Telangana into a unique multicultural region where two different cultures coexist, making the State the representative of the Deccan Plateau and its heritage with Warangal and Hyderabad being established as its epi-centre.
State of Festivals
Among the major cultural events celebrated are Kakatiya Festival, Deccan Festival, Bonalu, Bathukamma, Dasara, Ugadi, Shankaranthi, Milad Al Nabi, Eid Al Fitr (following the Holy Month of Ramadan) and Eid Al Adha.
Telangana has long been a meeting place for diverse languages and cultures. It is known as ‘South of North and North of South.’ It is also known for its Ganga-Jamuna Tehzeeb and the Capital City of Hyderabad is known as a ‘Miniature India.’
A Vivacious display
‘Festivals of Telangana’ was the theme of our presentation in the first segment of the First Annual Indian Newslink Festivals of South India held on Saturday, September 21, 2019 at Sacred Heart Auditorium in Auckland.
This segment included all major observances during the year including Ugadi, Holi, Telangana Formation Day, Maha Bathukamma and many others. We were also very pleased to present folk dances and other Performing Arts along with a display of traditional costumes by our men and women.
The artistes, all drawn from our local community, accounted for people from the age of 12 to 75 plus, presenting various items in a spirit of unity. There were 30 performers and at least 50 families involved in preparing them for the event.
The Telangana Youth Group, comprising the largest number (13), included Akshitha Gangishetty, Avanthi Nannegari, Greeshma Kasuganti, Harshitha Bheema, Hiral Pusarla, Keertana Sannidhanam, Keeru Rangu, Mayuri Medapati, Mithila Panuganti, Neha Kalaru, Sathvika Alle, Sejal Enaganti and Srija Mididoddi.
There were three traditional Kolattam and Teen Maar Dance Performers included Aishwarya, Neha Kalaru and Vijayashanthi. Traditional Telangana Attire was showcased by Dayanand Katakam, Raga Teja, Rajeeva Moturu, Sohini Madhishetty, Sridhar Nannegari and Swetha Patlolla.
The performers of Folk Dances were Aruna Panuganti, Vijetha Yachamaneni, Vijaya Rangu, Varsha Patlola, Sharmila Katakam, Sreesutha Nampally, Kiran Padma and Lakshmi Kasuganti.
The Maha Bathukamma Festival was a highlight at the Festivals of South India.
It is a Floral Festival celebrated predominantly by the Hindu women of Telangana and the 2019 event, organised by Telangana Association of New Zealand started on September 8, 2019 and on for nine nights.
Every year, this festival is celebrated as per Shalivahana calendar for nine days starting Bhadrapada Amavasya (also known as Mahalaya Amavasya or Pitru Amavasya) till
Durgashtami, usually in September–October of Gregorian calendar.
Narender Reddy Patlola is President of Telangana Association of New Zealand, which was one of the Organisers of the First Annual Indian Newslink Festivals of South India, representing the State of Telangana.
(Pictures by Creative Eye Fotographics)