Prelims 307

With reference to Chhau Dance, consider the following statements:
1. It is a dance practised mainly in Western India.
2. It is one of the performing-art forms on UNESCO’s intangible heritage list.
3. Steps and techniques of Pari-khanda, a form of martial art, are used in Chhau.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
A.
3 only
B.
1 and 2 only
C.
2 and 3 only
D.
1, 2 and 3
Explanation :
Chhau dance is a tradition from eastern India that enacts episodes from epics including the Mahabharata and Ramayana, local folklore and abstract themes. Its three distinct styles hail from the regions of Seraikella, Purulia and Mayurbhanj, the first two using masks. Chhau dance is intimately connected to regional festivals, notably the spring festival Chaitra Parva. Hence, statement 1 is incorrect.
Steps and techniques of Pari-khanda, a form of martial art are used in Chhau. It is performed exclusively by men. The dance is performed at night in an open space to traditional and folk melodies, played on the reed pipes ”mohuri” and ”shehnai.” Hence, statement 2 is correct.
This dance form is included in the UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) inscribes three Indian performing-art forms, the Mudiyettu, a ritual theatre of Kerala; the Chhau dance, a tradition from eastern India; and the Kalbelia folk songs and dances of Rajasthan in the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Hence, statement 3 is correct.

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