The West Demerara Indian Religious, Social and Cultural Organisation put on another impressive display of bygone culture of the East Indians who began arriving in this country 172 years ago.
Several mandirs from West Demerara set up elaborate floats which displayed different aspects of the way of life of East Indians of long ago.
Most of the floats were mounted on the trailers of tractors and driven to the Joe Vieira Park despite the inclement weather.
One of the floats depicted the music of the East Indians, and the sound of tassa drums reverberated in the air, as many braved the rain to dance on the road. Another of the floats depicted a Hindu wedding, with pandit, bride and groom, “luckney” and all!
On one of the floats, ladies, dressed in long skirts, with traditional headgear (rumal), held sickles in their hands to demonstrate how their ancestors worked in the rice fields. On another trailer, men portrayed the hard work of the sugar plantations.
Many of the floats displayed replicas of mud houses some of the immigrants lived in. Many of these floats showed how the East Indians cooked on the “fireside” and also how “sada” roti was cooked on “tawas” and then put at the mouth of the fireside to “swell.” Some ladies held sifters in their hand, showing how rice about to be cooked was cleaned.
Some of the replica of the houses featured mud walls, with nails to the wall hanging cups and shelves for placing plates.
Floats also sought to draw attention to the religions the immigrants brought with them, including Hinduism and Islam.
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