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State gears up for Magh Bihu celebrations

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Jan 13 - The people of the State have geared up for the Magh Bihu or the Bhogali Bihu that begins on Friday.

The Bhogali Bihu � a harvesting festival symbolizing plenty � is preceded by Uruka, the night of feast and merrymaking before the Bihu day.

The pre-Bhogali festivities find their best expression in the markets, as people in their hordes throng the bazaars looking for the best of foodstuff, especially fish, meat, milk, curd, cream, egg, chira, hurum, muri, etc. In equal demand are the various ready-made Bihu delicacies, even though some people prefer home-made delicacies.

The city, too, has come under the grip of the Bhogali spirit, with all its markets witnessing a huge rush today. The rush will intensify tomorrow, the day of the Uruka.

The determination and enthusiasm of the Bihu revellers could be seen today in the markets at Uzanbazar, Kachari, Ganeshguri, Beltola, New Guwahati Railway Colony, Paltan Bazar, Fancy Bazar, Ulubari, Six Mile, etc.

The skyrocketing prices of fish, meat, etc., have, however, failed to act as a dampener to the people�s enthusiasm who hit the markets with gusto, laying their hands on items of their choice.

The once-ubiquitous community meji � a thatch and bamboo structure which is consigned to flames early morning on the Bihu day as homage to Agni, the Fire God � may no longer be abundantly seen across the urban landscape, but it is still visible at places in the city. The bhelaghar � a makeshift shelter made of straw, bamboo and leaves where Bihu-revellers spend the Uruka night merrymaking before setting it on flames next morning � is also a rarity in the city landscape.

Many educational institutions and organisations of the city, too, have put up mejis, many of which were burnt this morning itself in view of the holiday in schools tomorrow.

Among those who will be celebrating the occasion with community participation include residents under the banner of Paschim Guwahati Nagarik Samiti. They are organising a Bhogali Utsav at the Sonaram High School playground on January 15. Some other areas, too, are organising similar festivities.

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