| The logo of the festival |
“Ev’rybody’s talkin’ ’bout
Bagism, Shagism, Dragism, Madism, Ragism, Tagism
This-ism, that-ism, ism ism ism
All we are saying is give peace a chance
All we are saying is give peace a chance...”
Shillong, Nov. 26: John Lennon’s Give Peace a Chance will resonate at the sixth edition of the Tura winter festival — Ahaia — to appeal to those who strap Kalashnikovs around them to let trouble-torn Garo hills dwell in freedom from strife.
The three-day festival, to be inaugurated by governor Krishan Kant Paul, will begin on December 9 morning.
In the evening, the best and brightest stars of yesteryears shall strum their guitars to entertain the audience with melodies of a bygone era in a programme titled Retro Nite.
West Garo Hills deputy commissioner Pravin Bakshi said the event would also honour musical greats of Garo hills who have left behind an unforgettable legacy.
“The Retro Nite will also include a special number of Beatles legend John Lennon, Give Peace a Chance, which is the theme of this festival in a year that has been marred with violence and disruptions. There will also be a candlelit invocation to peace and harmony,” Bakshi said.
The three-day festival, apart from celebrating the unique art and culture and rich traditions of Garo hills, and showcasing the cultural diversity, folk dance, folklore and ethnic festival wear, will also call for peace and tolerance towards all, he said.
On the first day of the festival, stakeholders, including church bodies, students, youth organisations, NGOs, traders, academicians, senior citizens and others will take out a peace rally.
The rally will issue a fervent plea for tranquillity and tolerance and make a passionate appeal for a return to normality in Garo hills and to bring it back on the path of progress.
The festival is being jointly organised by the Tura Arts and Culture Society with funds from the state arts and culture department, Meghalaya tourism and district administration, along with event partners.
Other highlights of the festival include the A’chik Orchestra arranged by the 100 Drums Wangala Committee, Garo war dance and musical rendition by students of several schools and colleges and renowned musical veterans.
The second day has been dedicated to women and children with programmes like Little Angels, Healthy and Pretty Baby Show, and a fancy dress competition, Hansel and Gretel.
A beauty pageant — Tura Winter Queen — will be held, along with a fashion show showcasing the indigenous wear of the region and rich textiles and designs, which have inspired a generation of fashion designers.
On the final day, there shall be an exhibition of muscular might as youths vie with each other in the arena of traditional sports and games.
There will also be an inter-locality tug-of-war event.
The grand finale will see a peace concert as a fitting culmination to the programme.
Battle Rock-VI, the signature rock band contest of the region, will witness the best of musical teams and rock bands vying for the ultimate honour of being declared the undisputed Kings of Rock in the region.
The other attractions include more than 50 stalls to display the entrepreneurial ability of the region, a slow food festival, Tura master chef competition, eclectic food stalls and others.