Chhaliya dancer Mohohar still boils tea on his head


By Gokarna Dayal,Baitadi, Mar. 25: Manohar Ram Damai (Manohar Pariyar) is a leading artist of Baitadi, Sudurpashchim. He boils tea on his head during Chhaliya dance while playing the Hudko and Damaha.

The scene of tea being prepared in a kettle with a fire lit on the head during Chhaliya dance while playing Hudko and Damaha is really astonishing.

On the day of Prithvi Jayanti in the year 2000, Manohar Pariyar became the first to perform a similar Chhaliya dance in a cultural programme of the then 14 zones of the country at Rastriya Nachghar held in the presence the then Prime Minister Girija 

Prasad Koirala.

Pariyar showed his shield, swordsmanship skills in the Chhaliya dance in the attire which looked like Prithvi Narayan Shah’s in the programme. He had received a prize of Rs. 1,00,000 then.

Pariyar has been awarded and honoured many times not only in Nepal, but also in Kumaon, Garhwal, in India.

He was also awarded the National Talent Award in 2019 for his long contribution to music and drama sectors with a prize of Rs. 1,00,000.

Born in 1955 in Melauli Municipality-1, Baitadi, Pariyar is an expert instrument player and dancer. He is also a composer and singer.

After Pariyar passed his SLC (School Leaving Certificate)  in 1971, he received offers from many places to 

become a teacher. 

However, due to the poor financial background, he decided to pursue art rather than teaching. He has sung dozens of songs so far. His songs are still being released on YouTube. His new song  “Mero Pyaaro Baitadi”  is being recorded.

 He has four sons and a daughter. Even though his sons have moved to Kathmandu and requested him to settle in Kathmandu, he wanted to stay in Baitadi playing Hudko, Damaha, harmonium 

and Tabala.

Pariyar does not want to leave Sudurpachchim because of his immense love for art and music of his place.

Manohar, now 67, has been continuously active in the art, culture and theater sector of Sudurpachchim for 50 years.

Even though he has spent five decades in the field of art, culture and music,  he faced caste-based discrimination millions of times while playing the Hudko 

and Damaha.

 Even now, he is being neglected in music and drama programmes held at the district and provincial levels.

He said that he was not invited to the programme of Pragya Pratishthan, which was recently formed in Sudurpachchim Province and he was also not invited to the International Literary Conference being held in Dhangadhi from March 24 to 27.

 Expressing his dissatisfaction over the discriminating behaviour , he said while dozens of programmes relating to art, culture, language, literature, and drama are being organised in Sudurpachchim Province, no organiser has invited him 

in those programmes. 

He said that he was not invited even in the ‘Tourism and Cultural Festival’ of Sudurpachchim Province held in Kanchanpur recently.

Pariyar claimed that due to extreme politicisation in the fields of language, literature and art, he is not able to get a place on the stage as the organisers only focused on how to collect more money through such programmes. 

Even the local government does not dare to honour Pariyar, who has spent half a century for the development and promotion of music, theater 

and songs.

  Pariyar said, “My sons have seen the discrimination that I have experienced from the village to the district and the state that’s why my sons want me to leave all this and live in Kathmandu permanently.”

Pariyar, who is also an expert of ‘Bhada’ (a heroic story) said that Prithvi Narayan Shah’s incomplete Bhada  is about 

to be completed.

Chhaliya dance and Bhada song of the Sudurpachchim are sung wearing Prithvi Narayan Shah’s costume while wielding a shield and sword.

 In the Chhaliya dance too, the shield, sword, and dress are the same, 

said Pariyar. 

However, Hudko is now disappearing. Unlike Madal, Hudko’s rhythm is not recorded anywhere.

 He said that if the government helped, he wanted to record the song and rhythm of Bhada that glorifies  Prithvi Narayan Shah  and which were on the verge of extinction. 

Pariyar has written a little Bhada about the struggle for the establishment of a republic in Nepal by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal 


However, Pariyar said that Prachanda-Bhada could not be sung anywhere because he had not completed it. 

Sangram Karkiko Bhada, Chhurakhatiko Bhada, Bhinya Kathayatko Bhada, Lali Saudalako Bhada, Rani Rautko Bhada, Udachhapaliyako Bhada, Shova Rautko Bhada, Narshadhhauniko Bhada, Sawan Maharako Bhada, Mangala Rautko Bhada, Kalu Bhandariko Bhada, Prithivi Nayaran Shahko Bhada are popular in Sudurpachhim.

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