India is full of colors and the various festivals celebrated accompanied by the fairs organized here, add fervour to the Indian culture. These cultural and traditional fairs add zeal and lives in the hearts of people. One such fair is Sharif Bhagwati fair, a Kashmir-centric fair, which is organized in the month of July.

Kashmir is referred to as the ‘Heaven on Earth’ and the ‘Crown of India’ for its sheer beauty which is enhanced and highlighted with the celebration of such festivals and fairs. The tradition and culture of Kashmir comes out with sparkling colors during the Sharif Bhagwati Fair.

Celebrations at Sharif Bhagwati Mela

Sharif Bhagwati Mela is one of the fairs that bring about harmonious relationships among people. On this day, the traditional attire, that is, “poost” and “pheran”, is worn by both men and women. Mughal type turbans, headgears and Taranga belt of Pashmina with colored scarf accessorize this beautiful attire. These costumes are well known for their embroidery and intricate designs, which beautifully portray the richness and the landscape of the valley. This fair portrays the blended culture of Kashmir that has major ingredients of Northern South Asian as well as Central Asian culture. Its cultural heritage is an amalgamation of numerous religious philosophies and the values, displaying elements of humanity and tolerance.
Sharif Bhagwati Fair 2015

Sharif Bhagawati Fair - Food

During the fair, a grand feast is organized that includes the best of the Kashmiri cuisines. These include 30 varieties of meat. However, beef is not a part of food since eating beef is prohibited in Kashmiri culture. Apart from this, the feast includes Rogan Josh, Yakhni, Matschgand, Qeleela, Mujh gaad, Dum Aloo to name a few. One interesting tradition that is witnessed here is drinking tea, which acts as an alternative of desserts at times.

Sharif Bhagwati Fair - Art & Culture

During this fair, multiple events are organized including buying and purchasing of exquisite traditional handicrafts and outfits of Kashmir. These quintessential handicrafts include Kashmiri shawls, carpets, wood work done on chinar and walnut wood, silk, silverware, papier mache, namdas, pherans, basketry, crewel work, copperware and brassware.

The Naqash , found here, is an ancient art, done on the silverware which is responsible for the determination of prices, similar is the consideration of the weight. The shawls, silk and carpets exhibited at this fair are hand woven and knotted. These handicrafts are engraved by the craftsmen and offer them great opportunities in making good money during the fair. Tourists from all over the globe visit Kashmir and become a part of this amazingly beautiful fair.

This fair is often fused with people dancing and singing in their traditional ways. Dumhal is a type of folk dance which is performed by Kashmiri men on this occasion. The performance requires the dancers’ to wear long colorful robes, tall conical caps that are studded with beads and shells. Like every Indian fair, this fair comprises of swings which cheer people of every age, need not to mention, especially children.

This fair embosses Kashmiri culture & tradition and defines the fascinating beauty of Kashmir. It proves to be an excellent tourist attracting element of Kashmir.

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