The Festival of Love

Bhagoria is a festival celebrated by the tribal people of the Indian state Madhya Pradesh (originally known as 'Malwa'). Also known as Bhagoria Haat Festival, during this festival, young boys and girls are allowed to elope after choosing their partners. The Bhagoria Haat Festival belongs to the local tribes called Bhils and Bhilalas.

Bhagoria Haat Festival is organized in the district of West Nimar and Jhabua. The haat is organized in the form of a 'swayamvar' or a marriage market where young girls and boys are allowed to choose their partners. Bhagoria Haat Festival has an agricultural significance attached to it, that is, it coincides with the end of harvesting. So some people also celebrate it to mark the completion of harvesting.

It is believed that the people of the village, "Bhagor" of District Jhabua started celebrating this festival many years back. Thus this is known as Bhagoria. It is a sparkling occasion, accompanied by singing, dancing and drunken revelry.

(All photos copyrighter Sudipto Das)

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