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Saturday, March 13, 2010

Chp 288. Cheraw World Record!

Yesterday was a wonderful and memorable day for all Mizos around the world. We’ve just set a new WORLD RECORD for the most number of people dancing simultaneously to our traditional dance called “Cheraw”, where bamboos are used as props.

It was a proud day for every Mizo worldwide.

Then of course I woke up this morning, still feeling the aftertaste of pride and sense of achievement (even though I was not a part of this historical moment) and happily picked up the newspaper. I was completely shocked that the Times of India and Mumbai Mirror mentioned nothing about this spectacular event. I was expecting at least a picture, because “Cheraw” dancers are so beautiful. Yet, nothing, nada, zilch.

On my way to office, I picked up Mid Day and DNA. Nothing in Mid Day either. DNA at least mentioned it briefly on page 12. Thanx guys.

According to

Lucia Sinigalie, an adjudicator from the Guinness, who supervised the entire event declared at 1500 hrs that Mizoram has achieved the largest dance ensemble in the world to a thunderous applause from what was believed to be the largest gathering of people in Mizoram.

''I was enthralled by the dance. It was fantastic and amazing. Aizawl is a mystical place, the people are fantastic. The people well deserve this world record,'' Sinigalie said as she handed over the certificate to Mizoram Art and Culture Minister P C Zoramsangliana.

Mizoram has edged the previous record of world's largest dance ensemble set by 7,000 dancers in Cebu in the Philippines last year.

w00t!!!! Now just thinking aside, had some dance troupe from Maharashtra, Delhi, Kolkata etc done the same thing and shattered the existing World Record, would the newspapers not mention anything about the event either? Ah…

Anyway, here’s hoping some of them at least mention about it tomorrow. Better late than never, aye?

BBC News too had already announced this event yesterday itself.

The dancers, who were mainly students, performed the traditional "Cheraw" dance along a 3km (1.8 mile) stretch in Aizawl, capital of Mizoram state.

Guinness World Records judge Lucia Sinigaliesi watched the dance along with tens of thousands of spectators.

The 10,378 dancers performed for eight minutes in Aizawl's spacious Assam Rifles Grounds, with many spilling out beyond the grounds.

People in Mizoram spent a lot of time preparing for this grand event. Here is one of the rehearsals on a roadside at night, because during the day the girls and boys had to go to school or college. Video courtesy samuelapa

I’ve collected a lot of photographs that people have submitted at our Mizo community site Here are some of the pictures. Do remember that a lot of these people danced on the streets of Aizawl and the entire traffic was closed for the day, since all of them didn't fit at the venue location. Click on the pics to enlarge. Pics courtesy Rina, Nancy, Shailendra, AS_Khiangte, and many others.

Even children took part in this:

Also got these great pics from my good friend Shahnaz:

Here are some of the videos on youtube so far.

This one is at a busy bazaar street. Video courtesy: Anoch

On the road. Video courtesy: mzvision

Chhinlung Academy. Video courtesy: andr3whiho

Road view, from top. Video courtesy: mzvision

Another view, from the roadside. Video courtesy: Jayanta Kumar Nath

Dancers at the main field. View from the VIP area. Video courtesy: Anoch

When it comes to Cheraw, there are a lot of different steps. The particular step that you see in all these videos, has been decided and approved by the Arts and Culture Dept. Below is a clip that I think is the same one approved by A&C. Video courtesy MrPaduh

Here are some of our girls practicing Cheraw, in casual wear. This is not a part of the World Record event though. Video courtesy: kimcanpo

Everywhere Mizos go, Cheraw is always taken along with them. Here are some Mizos in the US performing at a function there. . Video courtesy: lalthachianga

This dance is usally performed at Chapchar Kut, one of our main festivals. Here are the dancers on that same occasion. Video courtesy: MrPaduh

Last but not the least, here are our very own Mumbai Mizo girls performing this dance recently. MSYM – Mizo Students and Youth of Mumbai. Video courtesy: maruatafanai

Hope you enjoyed the pics and vids. Cheers! To end this amazing journey, here is a grand finale video. It is from the INCREDIBLE INDIA commercial. Check out 0:53 minute and watch the guy doing the Cheraw!!!!

Update: March 16th, 2010.

Times of India nor any of the other papers mentioned anything about this World Record, even the next day after I posted this. And I heard from a Facebook friend who is a journalist that she was contacted by DNA, so she’s the one sent them the press release from I&PR to DNA so that they could publish a small paragraph from it.

Anyway, it is at times like this that we feel more isolated, like we do not matter much to India. Breaking a world record of this magnitude is a landmark achievement, and yet with none of the media reporting it, the rest of India’s ignorance about people from the North East will only continue.

As I have just commented at Abhinav Blog: North Eastern Indian Women face Racism in their Own Country!: “Stereotypes can be abolished only when there is maximum exposure about a particular culture or community. The main reason we stereotype is simply because we don’t know anything about that person, or know too little.”


Zara Ralte said...

yeah, i enjoy a lot! nice pics and videos. Though am not personally involved in the great show we make it and i am proud off it.

Zairemthiama Pachuau said...

Fantastic post about great achievement. Hope the record performance will boost tourism in the state of Mizoram. Congratulations to all!!

OpaHmar said...

HAhaha Luv the guy doing Cheraw!! Good collection of "borrowed" pics.
Hoping to see Dinagrafix's ones. And I suppose DIPR should make a short official clip of the event for documentary...what say you?

Shuakshuali said...

yes, our economy may be failing, our politicians may not be the best..but we do deserve to have one day to celebrate being a Mizo, and what a celebration it was! yayyy!!

Loved the ad! Wish I was experiencing everything the guy experienced, including falling off the tree :)

Mizohican said...

@ azassk: It does make us all proud, doesn't it. Kudos on the team and organizing committee...

@ Zairemthiama: I hope so too.

@ Opa: Didn't have enough time last night. Will go ask the guys from LK if I can republish some of their pics here too. DIPR should definitely have an official clip.

@ Shuakshual: It was indeed a great way to proclaim our existence to the world. The last Ad is amazing too. Kinda stuff that makes you proud to be Indian.

aisha said...

I expected more coverage on this too... It's such a shame it didn't make the front page anywhere. Didn't anyone tip the indian presses? I didn't see any coverage on tv either.. Heheh... Ka lo duham tops aaa... Hnuk te poh ti ulh deuh lom lee

codeAries said...

Keichu ka awm bik :)

Anonymous said...

Well Well....Congratulations Mizoram for making India proud.Well done..

@Kima.. lets not expect this kind of news at least in mid-day.Mumbai for Marathis, not for rest:P ...Moreover CNN-IBN had told everyone to watch the coverage on DD network through Tracy ..

Lets enjoy this moment...:)Thanks for the pics... As usual hmeichhe are always beautiful :)

dr_feelgood said...

Its a good thing bamboos are the fastest growing grass, or else where would they get all those bamboos after they all died during the Mautam.
I think Pu Zoramthanga's dream has finally come true, except he's gone, so now we can call Pu Lal Thanhawla-ji, 'Bamboo Chief minister'!!

Mizohican said...

@ Aisha: Nia... I guess we are just getting what we always get...

@ codeAries: hets, rawn intithei suh auh... :)

@ Nepram: lolzzzz dude. And yeah, mizo hmeichhia are very hmeltha. Thanx man.

@ dr_feelgood: hihi. yup, Pu Hawla is now the new bamboo. I wonder what they did to all those used for this occasion?

Shuakshuali said...

Whoaaahh!!! Love the big head! Though havta admit I thought some frolicsome playboy bunnies would be buzzing around in there too :D

Jerusha said...

Nice collection Kims! Are you going to write more about the absence of proper media coverage? I scanned the papers for something, I even found the biggest ever article on Mizoram I had seen on the Deccan Chronicle but it was about the Baptist Church's ban on gay marriage :( Upsetting! Unfortunately it seemed everyone had read the papers that day and no one knows about the world record but everyone's asking me about the ban..

Mizohican said...

@ Shuakshual: You like big heads, dontcha? :P

@ Jeru: Nothing. And yes, the next day after I wrote this, hoping TOI would publish pictures of cheraw etc, yes, TOI wrote a long article about Mizoram, but not Cheraw. They wrote about the Baptist Church banning gays. In fact the main social buzz till now is about that, and not our Cheraw world record breaking moment. Sucks.

keimah said...

Mizoram created a world record for India, but India does not know it!


Shuakshuali said...

Vanlalruatkheema... why why why must you always twist a perfectly innocuous statement to fit your own perverted fantasies

And the answer to the question is: you'll never know, bleh

chawnghilh said...

CHERAW ... the greatest ever in the world in this widest covering weblog for World Record CHERAW, more than any blog ever so far!

Glad to watch them all!

Dr. Chandana Shekar said...

whoo!!! Nice culture I would say... Looks like you guys enjoy big time doing it.. Cool. Lucky you that u got such amazing things to be proud of.. I enjoyed watchin the videos and pics..

Mizohican said...

Dr. Chandana: Thanx! I really hope you enjoyed them. The dance is beautiful and its a part of our culture I'm extremely proud of.

@ keimah: Sad, na? :(

@ shuakshual: ok ur living up to ur name now :) This' just not the right place for such a conversation :D

@ chawnghilh: You have been around at the online mizo world, and you know the type of discussions going on about this. I am just frustrated that people are more worried about arguing whether it should be "cheraw" or "bamboo dance" as the official name, when in fact none of the media bothered to mention about it. Whether it is cheraw or bamboo dance, does it really matter, if nobody reports it? What is the point then? Sometimes I just feel like tearing down my computer. aaaargh.

zama (fonz) said...

mizo lam ah chuan chheih lam hi nawm ber ka ring

Tetea said...

I know how it feels. The next morning I went to the news stand and bought ALL the English papers.

Then I hurried back home hoping to see pictures of colourful Mizo girls on the front page of at least one national paper.

I can't possibly describe how I felt that morning. Disappointment, dissatisfaction, disgust, anger, you name it.

And to make things more strange, there was an article about the Baptist Church of Mizoram and their stance on Homosexuality.


Maybe homosexuals are more important than a world record.

Come on! How can they miss it when it was televised LIVE on national TV?

If this happened in America they'll say its a conspiracy theory. I'm not saying thats the case, all I'm saying is that its very close. Remember, it was a WORLD RECORD.

Maybe the newspapers find the dance too 'exotic' or 'alien' to the cultures of 'mainland' India that they never bothered to mention it.

Though I took no part in making the record, I still have pride being a Mizo. But what use is pride when others don't even know a thing about it?

How hard could it be? Just one article, just one mention of the achievement. Maybe I was asking too much.

Clio said...

Nice pics and videos!!!After seeing all those, I feel like going home.Cngratulations to everyone!

Lucy In The Sky said...

Thank for sharing the awesome pix!

I scanned the papers and searched online for the news too and it was disappointing. I'd even hoped to see it on news channel. Silly me?

Gosi Sailo said...

Thanks for posting those awesome pics and videos...I am proud to be Mizo. We are making a difference!!!! :-)

chawnghilh said...

My daughter struggled her utmost on a scorchingly heated Aizawl road, "I blistered all my foot-soles," she said. She is fortunate enough to be in this Cheraw Word record generation!

Irene said...

I am proud of you! I was hoping to see in the National Head line but in vain....

Blind Dayze said...


Mizohican said...

@ fonz: nia, han chheih vel hi nuam i tih hmel... nang, chheihkumara. :D

@ Tetea: Exacto. Well written, and my thoughts exactly. This is just a small reminder that we still have a long way to go in this place that we call our country.

@ Clio: Don't we all wish that too? :) Thanx.

@ Lucy: At least they showed it on Doordarshan. :) For the other news media, it wasn't newsworthy enough, I guess.

Mizohican said...

@ Gosi: We definitely are. Mizo kan ni, kan hmel a tha! :)

@ Chawnghilh: My niece was in this event too. lolzzzz my sis gave me their video clip, and it was hilarious watching all the mistakes they made. Its like they just kept doing the wrong step with every beat! Thank god none of those vids were uploaded on youtube. hahaha!

@ Irene: I hope one day, things will be different for us.

@ Blind Dayze: #WIN! :-)

Malsawmi Jacob said...

Great and grand! Tleirawl lai min ti ngai!

samuelapa said...

Nice report, good collections of pix and vids, interesting comments - All in One.
Thanks for including my poor poor vid and I should be more thankful had my nick been typed correctly

Mizohican said...

@ samuelapa: lolzzzzz so sorry!!!! :-) Am correcting it right away, hotupa.

@ mesjay: Yeah, me too. :D

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful dance! Thanks for showcasing this in your blog. Really, if the rest of India is so unaware of this, it's our own loss, not yours. So hold your head high and keep writing. That's how people like me are always reminded - beautifully - that just as India is the civilisation of the Ganga, the Himalayas, the Narmada and the Kaveri, it is equally the civilisation of the Brahmaputra and the Lushai Hills.


Geneza Pharmaceuticals said...

Great fest!

Cosmo said...

The guy is definitely just, and there's no doubt.
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