Friday 23 March 2018

Magh Bihu and The Bihu Dance:The Festival of Assam.

Festivals bring respite into our busy and daily hustle bustle of life.Festivals revitalize a new light and hopes in us. Bihu is set of festivals, the most important festival of Assam. Bihu is  three different cultural festivals that are celebrated in different times of the year.People of Assam commemorating the change of season in accord with the Assamese calendar. Assam, one of the most beautiful states of India, known for its tea gardens, lush green forests and the mighty Brahmaputra River. The warmth and friendliness of Bihu is what makes it one of the most loved and enjoyed festivals in India.

The origin of the word ‘Bihu" is said to be from the Sanskrit word ‘Vishu’. However, according to some, “Bi” means “to ask” and “Hu” means “to give”. 

                                                                         Brahmaputra River in Assam.

 is celebrated not once, but thrice in a year in Assam? The three types of Bihu in a year are: Rongaali Bihu or ‘Bohaag Bihu’, Kati Bihu or Kongaali Bihu and the last but not the least Magh Bihu or Bhogaali Bihu’.

Bohag Bihu is also known as Rongali Bihu.
It is the first Bihu, which marks the beginning of Assamese new year in April and is celebrated with grandeur to welcome the spring.This festival coincides with other Indian Festivals, namely, Baisakhi, Sankranti and Chait.

Bihu Dance
It is celebrated for a week and the whole environment is filled with happiness and merriment. Laddos and varieties of Pithas are made on this occasion and Jolapn is the main delicacy which people eat on this festival. 

The first day is called “Goru Bihu” and on this day, the cattle are taken to the river or pond to clean them and offer prayer. This day is celebrated on the last day of the month.
Bihu Dance
And the next day, which is known as “Manuh Bihu” and on this day people wear new clothes and celebrate this festival with vigor and enthusiasm. During Bohag Bihu, Bihu Dance, the famous folk dance of Assam is performed on Bihu geet. 

Kongali Bihu or Kati Bihu .
This is the second Bihu and is most sober of all three Bihus. Kati Bihu is celebrated in mid-October, when the crops are growing but the farmers’ granaries are depleting.

To protect the maturing paddy, cultivators whirl a piece of bamboo and recite rowa-khowa chants and spells to ward off pests and the evil eye. During the evening, cattle are fed specially made rice items called pitha. 

It’s a time of solemn solidarity and hope for successful harvest. On this day, tulsi plant is planted on the fields to seek blessings for prosperity and protecting the paddy from being affected.On this day lamps, called saki, are lit on the tips of bamboo poles in the fields, as a guide to spirits. 

Lamps are also lit in the gardens, especially under tulsi plants, and in the granaries.Farmers also chant spells to ward off negativity and pests, praying for successful harvests. Cattle are fed especially prepared items known as pitha, made of rice.

It’s a time of solemn solidarity and hope for successful harvest. On this day, tulsi plant is planted on the fields to seek blessings for prosperity and protecting the paddy from being affected.
Magh Bihu also known as Bhogali Bihu
This is third Bihu, a harvesting festival celebrated in the month of Magh of the Hindu calendar and mid-January of the Georgian calendar.It is the period when the hard working agricultural folk of Assam sit down to reap the benefits of their labor. Everyone celebrates the festival with great fervor, right from the smallest of villages to the big towns and cities of Assam.

This festival is mainly a feasting festival because the granaries of people are filled with grains. This is basically the season of eating and merrymaking.
On the eve of this festival, which is called “Uruka” is celebrated with grandeur and people get together for feasting. People construct Meji and Bhelaghar, a makeshift cottage, inside which people feast. 

Next morning, people offer prayers to the Fire God and several sports are organized like cock-fight, buffalo-fight, Nightingale-fight and Egg-fight for the entertainment of people.

The Bihu dance is a folk dance from.
 This joyous dance is performed by both young men and women, and is characterized by brisk dance steps, rapid hand movement, and a rhythmic swaying of the hips in order to represent youthful passion. Dancers wear traditionally colorful Assamese clothing.

The Bihu dance is performed in conjunction with traditional Bihu folk music, played with: the "dhol", similar to a drum; the mohor singor pepa, a pipe instrument made from a buffalo horn; the tala, a cymbal; the gogona, a reed and bamboo instrument; and the toka, a bamboo clapper.

The songs (bihu geet) that accompany the dance have been handed down for many generations. The subject of the lyrics ranges from welcoming the Assamese new year to describing the daily life of a farmer.

However, the underlying goal of the dance remains the same: to express the desire to feel both pain and happiness.

 Music is a vital part of every folk dance and the same is the case with Bihu. There are many instruments that are utilized during a Bihu performance namely a dhol, pepa, Taal, toka, xutuli, gogona and baanhi. Not even one musical instrument can be ruled out of the list as they all play a pivotal role in producing the traditional tunes for the Bihu performance. A traditional Bihu performance is eye catching and worth cherishing as it recites the happiness and heritage of the Assamese people.

The energetic dance steps and quick hand movements define the Bihu dance of Assam. But that is not all as any folk dance is incomplete without its costume and jewelry and the performers of Bihu don the traditional Assamese attire. This dance is performed usually by the young males and females to show their joy and merriment on the arrival of spring season. A lot of vibrancy can be seen in the dance outfit of Bihu and that is what depicts the genuine spirit of this dance form.

Music is a vital part of every folk dance and the same is the case with Bihu. There are many instruments that are utilized during a Bihu performance namely a dhol, pepa, Taal, toka, xutuli, gogona and baanhi. Not even one musical instrument can be ruled out of the list as they all play a pivotal role in producing the traditional tunes for the Bihu performance. A traditional Bihu performance is eye catching and worth cherishing as it recites the happiness and heritage of the Assamese people.

Photos in this blog are taken from stock photos available on net and with thanks to photographer of these photos.

. I am sure after reading this write up, you will fall in love with Assam and people of Assam.

Monday 19 March 2018

Art Niche 2018-Art Carnival of CEC,AMU. Aligarh:Through my Lense

The ‘Art Niche 2018’, an art carnival was organised by Cultural Education Center of Aligarh Muslim University Aligarh, from 13th March to 16th March, 2018 at Kennedy House Complex.It was a four-day International Art Festival with theme Art Niche 2K18.This festival is getting a brand popular name for people of Aligarh. Art Niche festival provides a very good platform to display talents of AMU students.
A View of  Kennedy House Complex during Art Nich 2018 organised by C E C of AMU. Aligarh

This colorful event was started with a splendid sight as Japanese candles were drifted into the sky during the inaugural ceremony of the extravaganza at the Abdullah Hall, Women’s College, AMU.
The festival included many events such as International Art Exhibition, Workshops, Swaad Niche (Food stalls/Gaming Stalls), Photo logy, Fun Events, exciting Art Competitions; Rangoli/Calligraphy, T-Shirt Painting, Matka Painting, Tattoo Art, Bottle Painting, Face Painting/Makeup Art, Soap Carving, Cosplay/Performing Art etc.

CEC lawn in AMU was decorated with Rangoli patterns with calligraphy and fashion sketch on display. The installation of creative art structures were conceptualized by Sabir Khan with the support of Ranjan Kumar, Faizullah Ahmad and Ayaan Madaar.
Omair Iftekhar with famous Artist Mr Gulrez Ali
Meanwhile, Swaad Niche, a Commercial Bazaar, with a 3D photo booth and gaming zone were attractions of many people.
Mr. Sumeet Chopra ,journalist with Wajid Khan and Ms Afreen Khan

Internationally renowned artist and TEDx Talk speaker, Mr Aditya Dev Sharma with Bharti Sapra (Head, ADIFA Fineart, New Delhi) conducted an interactive workshop engaging students in discussions of ideas of life and world unity.During the workshop Mr Sharma motivated participants by saying that ‘don’t follow fashion, but become the fashion’.
Mr. Gori Yusf Husen Internal Calligraphy Artist
A major highlight of the event was the inaugural of an international Art Exhibition at Moinuddin Ahmad Art Gallery by eminent artist, Mr Gulrez Ali, Prof Madhu Rani (Chairperson, Department of Fine Arts), Mr Gori Yusuf Husen (International calligraphy artist).Suneet Chopra (Journalist and Politician).The exhibition had art on Syrian war by Zainul Abdi and Ayaan Madaar and works of Jamel Ahmed and Abdul Hasan on display.

Cultural Programs wre also organised during this festival such as Musical Performances by musical clubs of Cultural Education Centre, Monologues by Drama Club, CEC and Padhant: A Prose & Poetry Recitation of Urdu Literature by Azharuddin Azhar&Team sitar and flute music given by Akhlaque Ahmed and Momin Ali respectively.

The main attraction of Art Niche 2018 was: Inventive artist Wajid Khan the humble holder of a patented form of art called nail art painting and 200 inventions.

Wajid Khan

Wajid Khan –Owns a patent and a Guinness record in his name. He left school at Class V and then, eventually house too. He has been commissioned to design a unique sculpture for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, to be held in Qatar.

Inventive Artist Wajid Khan

Apart from Guinness, Wajid Khan is featured in the Golden Book of World Records, Limca Book of World Records, India Book of World Records, and Asia Book of World Records. 

Gori Yusuf Husen renowned calligraphy artist from Gujarat taught students calligraphy which gave star to the international art exhibition.
Momin Ali playing  flute

Another spectre of the festival was the? Photology Exhibition? Comprising of photo-booths where people created dreamy pictures of themselves. The exhibition had Prof Farhat Basir Khan from Jamia Millia Islamia as the Guest-of-Honor.

Monologues by Shakir Ali signifying destruction to an innocent life caused by superstition and portraying the true image of the society by Jafar hasnain the secretary of drama club along with the background music through flute by Momin Ali.Haider Saifullah and Faizan Ilahi Jafar Hasnain, also entertained audience with sweet melodious songs during this festival.

 Professor F S Sherani (Coordinator, CEC), Muzammil Bhavani and Dr Abdur Rahman helped in organising the event. The festival ended with a felicitation ceremony. Over 9, 000 people visited the four-day festival. Momin Ali (Ex-General Secretary PR, CEC), Amna Jalali (PR Head of University Fine Arts Club) Yuman Zafar and Nihal.

 Posted and Photographed by Engr Maqbool Akram

Monday 12 March 2018

Management Tips –Secret of Body language in your success at Work place

Have you ever realized, that key to great success of your profession is secret in body language at Work Place. You are a responsible employee. You regularly go to your work place five days a week, complete every assignment by overly exceeding your boss’s expectations, and always arrive before your office time. Only because you have some of these qualifications, doesn’t exactly mean that your boss is going to call you into his/her office to give you a well-deserved raise.

A person’s confidence and ability to perform a job clearly reflects on the display of body language and how he composes himself. Positive body language and confidence are interconnected
A positive body language highly influences people we interact with. A facial expression that carries a smile and releases positive signs creates a healthy environment for both the parties in conversation.

No matter how hard you work at your workplace, unprofessional body language can send much of your hard work out the window.In fact, in face-to-face communication, research shows that your words account for only 7% percent of your interaction — 38% is in your tone of voice, and 55% is in your nonverbal cues, or body language.

Management Tips:Secret of Body Language

No matter how hard you work at your workplace, unprofessional body language can send much of your hard work out the window.In fact, in face-to-face communication, research shows that your words account for only 7% percent of your interaction — 38% is in your tone of voice, and 55% is in your nonverbal cues, or body language.
Not sure which body language mistakes you’re making? Here are a dozen tips for using body language to project confidence, credibility, and your personal brand of charisma: These effective body language may lead to your professional success.

1-Positive Eye Contact is key to Sucess.

Eye contact is essential to effective communication.It shows respect and interest. Maintaining eye contact makes you trustworthy, likeable, and powerful. When you're in a conversation, be careful to also pay attention to what is being said.

One may reduce their gaze if they don’t feel confident in what they’re speaking about or prefer to not engage in embarrassing conversations. But if you want to increase your chances of having better conversations with people at work, look them in the eyes when you or they are speaking because it produces a deeper connection between the both of you.However, be careful not to do  things with your eyes that disconnect, like rolling your eyes, or looking away.

2-Smile and Win the Word

Smiling is one of the easiest ways to convey confidence. Show your engagement and put everyone at ease. First impressions matters, it is extremely important because it creates the granite foundation for the way in which people perceive us.When you walk into a room or a meeting, say hello (even if just with a smile or a nod).  Don't skip this step even if you are entering late!
 3-A Warm Handshake is your attitude
Since touch is the most powerful and primitive nonverbal nod. The right handshake can give you instant credibility and the wrong one can cost you the job or the contract. Handshakes in original strike is a balance between a forceful grip and finalization of the projects when it comes to the business works.

Strong and firm handshakes tells about a person’s personality, business styles and the various negotiating techniques.Loose handshakes show uncertainty and lack of interest in the proposal by the person.
Handshake should be firm and steady and should only last between two and five seconds,and don't forget to engage in eye contact and have good posture.If you're meeting someone for the first time,be sure to repeat the name so you don't forget it.

4-Hiding Your Hands

Don't sit on your hands or hide them in your lap. Place them on the arms of your chair or the desk or use them to gesture. Gesturing makes you look more expressive, and the interviewer can read how open and honest you are by looking at your hands.

Hiding your hands when you're engaging in a conversation can be perceived as being not trustworthy. Plus, according to a study, people are more inclined to listen to you if you use your hands when you should have your palms open and facing up to be viewed as trustworthy and open.

We tend to hide our hands when we are nervous; keeping your hands out in the open indicates confidence and shows people you have nothing to hide. Also, recognize that putting your hands in your pockets encourages slouching, which isn’t good. As an alternative, try putting your hands on your hips; it’s a far more confident posture

5-Crossing Your Arms, Legs, or Feet

While criss-cross applesauce used to be the cool-kid thing to do in elementary school. Crossing your arms, legs or feet may feel comfortable while you’re trying to pump out a million emails or listen to your boss speak during a meeting, however, this nonverbal behavior could give off negative signals to others around you.

For instance, others may not engage with you because they think you’re being defensive, stubborn, or distant, and no one wants to play that game.However, do cross your arms if you’re alone in your cubicle, working on a tough assignment. 

6-Invading Personal Space

Whether you’re super friendly with your colleague or not, it’s best to keep a healthy distance between you and your work friends — and your boss — when you communicate about a professional topic. 

If not, you can make the other person feel uncomfortable and even threatened by your presence. The best rule to follow? Three to eight feet is the perfect amount of distance to have between you and your colleagues.

7-Looking Bored

Staring at the clock? Aimlessly doodling on a pad of paper? Sighing at your desk? All of these things could show your boss that you're bored at work — even when you don’t think they’re noticing.

Try to be mindful of your body language — especially since nonverbal behavior accounts for 55% of the messages you communicate. Go for a walk if you feel bored or ask your colleagues if they need help with anything. The more proactive you are at work, the better you may feel

8-Leaning on Walls or Furniture

Remember to stand up straight - it'll help people know that you are alert and confident.  Keep your feet about shoulder-length apart and engage your core. 

9-Eyeing the Clock
Be careful not to sneak too many glances at your watch, especially if you are in a conversation with a colleague.  Watching the clock implies impatience and can be considered disrespectful.

10-Facing Away from the Conversation

If your body isn't facing the conversation, you run the risk of seeming disengaged (or even rude). Take a moment and square your shoulders and torso towards the group.  If you're sitting down, turn the chair to face the action.

11-Using Your Phone

Using your phone at work, especially during a meeting, shows a lack of respect to the person who’s talking. Ideally, try to keep the relationship with your phone at a minimum and if you do need to use it in front of your colleague, say excuse me before you text away. Trust us — mom would be proud.

12-Stand tall and take up space. 
Power, status, and confidence are non verbally displayed through the use of height and space. Keeping your posture erect, your shoulders back, and your head held high makes you look sure of yourself.

If you stand you will look more powerful and assured to those who are seated. If you move around, the additional space you take up adds to that impression. If you are sitting, you can look more confident by putting both feet flat on the floor, widening your arms away from your body (or hooking one elbow on the back of your chair), and spreading out your belongings on the conference table to claim more territory.

13-Lower your vocal pitch

In the workplace, the quality of your voice can be a deciding factor in how you are perceived. Speakers with higher-pitched voices are judged to be less empathic, less powerful and more nervous than speakers with lower pitched voices. One easy technique I learned from a speech therapist was to put your lips together and say “Um hum, um hum, um hum.” Doing so relaxes your voice into its optimal pitch. This is especially helpful before you get on an important phone call – where the sound of your voice is so critical.

14-Shows that you are focused and


A speaker in a conversation would like to know if people are listening. Usage of non-verbal signals like nodding, maintaining eye contact and facing the speaker are clear signs of active listening and show the speaker that you are engaged in the conversation.

15-Quit Fidgeting!

Experts agree that playing with your hair, biting your nails, and playing with your jewelry shows you are embarrassed about your appearance or nervous about the interaction.

So, stop! No one is going to notice your appearance unless you point it out through your non verbals, so let it go.Cracking your knuckles, playing with your hair, biting your nails and lip all fall under the examples of a nervous gesture.Displaying these nervous habits in front of your boss or colleagues may lessen your credibility and make others believe you’re anxious or incompetent
So from above write up the importance and secrets of body language is clear. Body language speaks louder than words and sometimes we can communicate things even without the aid of a single word. We use it all the time in our social life and business life so it is all about gestures movements and expressions made by people to deliver a specific message to other people.

Great public speakers and presenters are ones who have mastered the art of gestural communication through which they make their presentations memorable and inspiring.

Thanks for reading—Author of this Blog is Sheeba Siddiqui an HR Expert—Photo and some contest are taken from different sources available on Net with thanks.