By Paritosh Chakma
I am happy and excited on hearing the news that my state (Mizoram) has received invitation from the organizers of the Common Wealth Games 2010 to send a team to perform “Cheraw” dance, popularly known as bamboo dance, at the opening ceremony of the Games in New Delhi in October 2010. “Cheraw” is basically a traditional dance of the Mizo people, but since it symbolizes Mizoram’s pride and culture, a Chakma of Mizoram like me cannot but be proud in equal measure.
Mizos have long cherished this traditional dance and they enjoy performing it. In March 2010 this dance shot into international fame by entering into Guinness World Records when over 10,378 Mizo dancers performed “the largest and longest bamboo dance" in the world for eight minutes in Aizawl. (I had written about this in my blog, http://paritosh-chakma.blogspot.com/2010/03/historic-bamboo-dance-in-aizawl.html )
The beauty of this dance is so mesmerizing that it can't be missed at the Common Wealth Games 2010 if India wanted to showcase its cultural diversity to the world. In the context of India, the invitation also means that Mizoram, a tiny state in far-flung North East, is being recognized for her exotic tradition and peaceful co-existence of different cultures.
Indeed, this is a historical opportunity for the people of Mizoram to showcase their beautiful dance before the entire world. I am sure this colourful and skillful dance will entertain the spectators at the opening ceremony.