Celebration of various fairs & festivals in Uttarakhand showcases the high religious spirit and traditional values that people of Uttarakhand have. From small to big all the fairs & festivals are very vibrantly celebrated by people of Uttarakhand. Selku Fair is one of them.
When & Where is Selku Fair celebrated ?
People of Uttarakhand have been celebrating Selku Fair every year on Makar Sankranti. It is celebrated in Raithal village of Bhatwadi in Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand. In Mukhba, Ghorsali, Dharali, Gangotri and Budha Kedar region this festival is celebrated in Bhadrapada Masa (as per Hindu calendar) usually in the month of September.
How Selku Fair celebrated ?
During the fair, the offering of state flower ‘Brahmkamal’ is considered very auspicious. People in large number pluck and offer this flower at the Someshwar temple. Devotees pray for wellbeing of their families. Other deities namely Kandaar Devta from Uttarkashi and Someshwar devta, mother Jagdamba from Kharasali temple are also brought down in decorated palanquins.
People from nearby villages namely Harsil, Kharsali, Mukhba, Jhala, Saur, Lata, Ghorsali, Jaspur, Bhilang Basai ,Dharali participate in the fair with high enthusiasm.
Selku fair marks the change of season. Through this fair localities thank the lord for keeping them safe and healthy throughout the year mostly during monsoons. Local natives bid good bye to the monsoons by celebrating this vivid fair.
Significance of Selku Fair
The literal meaning of Selku is ‘soyega kaun’ (who will sleep). The festival is celebrated with high zest in which traditional dance performances take place and no one sleeps. Devotees get lost in the colorful fever of the fair. One of the popular dances named ‘Raso’ & ‘Tandi’ takes place in which people beautifully dances around the palanquin in circle.
It is believed that reason behind the celebration of Selku Fair is related to Tibetan trade. During the old days, people dealing in trade business use to travel to Tibet to buy namak (salt) and aata (flour). And people from Tibet use to come here to buy Kodo ka Aata. For the save return of the traders and for flourishing trade people use to wait and offer prayers to devoted god ‘Rameshwar’. They used to be awake the whole night and danced on the melody of local singers. Till now this fair is considered very important and honored by the people.