Charity & the Celebration of Culture: Dhol Baje 2022
Manipal witnessed the most awaited and spectacular event of Dhol Baje 2022 on November 22nd at KMC Greens, with the night reverberating to pulsating Garba and dandiya raas beats and people dancing to the vibrant music. In addition to serving as a night of entertainment and a means of connecting with our culture, Dhol Baje was an initiative that the Rotaract Club of MAHE started for a noble cause– the cause of giving back to society. All the funds collected through the event will be donated to charity.
The Rotaract Club of MAHE conducted the event under President Atharva Sawardekar & Secretary Nivedita R. The team had the strong support and guidance of DRCC Rtn. Jaivittal. It was graced with the presence of esteemed dignitaries such as Dr Geetha Maiya, Rtn Ramchandra Upadhyay, Rtr. Mahalasa Kini, Mr. Sp Kar and Col. Prakash Chandra.
The lovely people at Asare, the home for the mentally challenged, graced the event, dancing and grooving to the festive music, their faces radiant with smiles. Holding hands together in a circle, they poured their hearts out on the stage through their dance and joy.
Dr Geetha Maiya, in her speech, stated that she is thrilled to see more and more people be a part of Dhol Baje with each passing year. Adding emphasis on the growing diversity and unity at the event, Dr Maiya quoted Rabindranath Tagore, saying, “The significance which is in unity is an eternal wonder.”
The event began with an invocation prayer followed by the commencement of the evening’s informal and highly anticipated part– the Garba night.
As the disco lights came on and music boomed throughout the ground, people took over the dance floor, their bangles jangling to the beats, the vivid hues of the lights hitting the colours of the jewellery and forming a breath-taking spectrum. While the upbeat and high-spirited Gujarati music filled the air, all students and families present at the event became one, their hands going up in the air in concert to celebrate a culture and dance form that is such a significant and beautiful part of Indian tradition, and the same bright and exuberant smiles plastered on their faces.
Furthermore, to add to the fun, there were also four prizes being given out to the people gathered– the Best Male Dancer, Best Female Dancer, Best Male Dressed and Best Female Dressed. With this announcement, the vigour of the participants only increased, with them flaunting their traditional looks and graceful dance moves.
The night also saw some stellar dance, music, and fashion performances by some of the best clubs in MAHE. Mafia, one of the dance and music clubs, displayed two stunning performances, leaving the audience in awe. Halcyon dance club was also there to showcase their best moves.
Chords & Co, another music club, mesmerised the audience with ethereal covers of classic Hindi songs like Pehli Nazar Mein and Kabira.
But the zeal and enthusiasm were not only limited to dance and music! Shruti Shastri, dubbed ‘Manipal ki Sumukhi Suresh’ and Shrey Karna from Comedy Club Manipal, brought the house down with their delightfully amusing stand-up comedy performances.
The performances ended with glam & glitz, showing us a gist of global cultures through a fashion show.
After all the astounding performances, the stage was open for the people to dance and groove to their heart’s content. The music gradually changed from Gujarati to Hindi, Punjabi and English, displaying the ultimate diversity at the event.
When asked about her experience at the event, Vindhya, a student at Mahatma Gandhi Memorial College, Udupi, said that the event was living up to all her expectations and that she was having a fabulous time with her friends there. This was her first time attending Dhol Baje, and she said she would try attending the event in the years to come, too, as it was not just about dance or music but a celebration of cultures and practices, something that she finds very inspiring.
There were also several stalls set up for refreshments. The music and the performances continued as people enjoyed refreshing golas, steaming hot potato spirals, freshly-made pasta, cold drinks and the staple of every Indian event– chaat. The place lit up with dazzling lights was a picturesque backdrop for photos, and people across the program could be seen taking pictures with their friends, capturing those moments of happiness to store them eternally.
The momentous night ended with a vote of thanks to the organisations that sponsored the event (Hakuna Matata, Crafts mantra, Sonia clinic & nursing home, Hotel Ashlesh and Basil Cafe) and the dignitaries for taking time from their busy schedules to attend the event. Mementoes were presented to the Chief Guests as a token of appreciation.
Dhol Baje 2022 was a tremendous success, with around 2000 people participating and being a glorious celebration of culture, tradition and unity and a glorious reminder of giving back to society and donating for the betterment of the less fortunate sections of the world.