Festivals of Gujarat > Dangs Darbar
the most delightful districts of Gujarat is the area known as The Dangs. Located high in
the Saputara hills, adjoining the borders of Maharashtra State, Dangs is the home of adivasis
who have lived in the forests and highlands of the Dangs region from time immemorial. The
most important town is Ahwa, 2000 feet above sea level. Higher still is the village of
Don, which is 3560 feet above sea level. Nearby is Saputara which may be called Gujarat's
hill station. The climate here is cool and pleasant. The resident adivasis derive
their livelihood from the forests which are rich in timber, honey, wax and lac. Many wild
animals live in the forests including tigers, chital, bears, pigs, and deer. There are
numerous snakes in the district, including cobras and pythons.
The tribal people make up
three-fourths of the population. The men wear a loincloth, a waistcoat and a colourful
cloth wrapped around the head. Women wear a sari and a blouse, embellished with numerous
silver ornaments of which they are very fond.
Darbar is the name of the annual fair held in Ahwa every year, a few daysbefore Holi. The
name 'Darbar' dates back to the time of the British, when a darbar of Rajas and Naiks of
neighbouring areas used to assemble there. Today it is also called the Jamabandi Darbar,
and the District Collector officiates at it. Thousands of tribal people flock to Ahwa from
all over the district, gaily dressed in lively colours, sounding the shehnai and beating
Darbar today attracts merchants frontt as far away as Nasik, Surat and West Khandesh. Folk
dances enliven the fair during the few days it lasts. The Education Department organises
folk dances, ras and garba programmes, songs and dramas.
Within easy reach of Ahwa by
road are Surat (155 kms) a busy industrial city with historic associations; the port of
Daman,(149 kms)once a Portuguese colony ; Sanjan, where the Parsis first landed in India,
and many well-known small towns of Gujarat. The city of Mumbai can be reached from here
within a few hours.
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