Jharkhand Dance

Jharkhand dance forms are a medium of expressing one's feelings, some story or any other event. Most of these folk dances in Jharkhand are performed by the local tribes. These dances not only reflect their mood or dancing talent but also bring into light their culture, traditions and beliefs.
The performance of folk dance in Jharkhand does not await the arrival of any particular festival; most of these dances are performed during all the important festivals and occasions such as while welcoming the guests, change of seasons, etc.

The tribe that performs the folk dance at Jharkhand is the Kunjbans. They are the main performers of folk dances all across the state. Their performance is so widely popular that they have already performed in places such as Europe, United States, Asia and India.

The Indian government has now taken up the initiative of promoting these talents and the folk dance of Jharkhand.

The first step towards this was to register it with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR). The main aim of this organization is to promote Indian arts in various regions of the country as well as in foreign land.

Most of the folk dance around Jharkhand is accompanied by traditional music played by the musicians using some traditional musical equipment. Some of the very famous Jharkhand dances are as follows:
  • Bheja Dance
  • Damkach Dance
  • Janani Jhumar Dance
  • Mardana Jhumar Dance
  • Phagua Dance
  • Sarhul Dance


Paika is one of the very famous dance forms of Jharkhand. In fact, it is a dance form where martial arts are mixed with some other dance steps. This is why the dance form is only performed by the male members of the society.

Paika of Jharkhand is a very interesting dance form of the region. It offers a thrilling entertainment to your eyes as the men risk their lives to perform it. The dancers have to handle a sword in one hand and the shield in other. For protection, they are dressed with safety chest plates and head wears and bells are tied on their ankles.

Paika in Jharkhand is accompanied by the melodious music of Narsingha, Shahnai, Bheir and the Dhak and Nagara drums. This folk dance of Jharkhand is performed for welcoming guests during various functions.

The whole ambience during the performance of this dance form is very charming. The dancers wearing their colorful robes along with the local tribes create fascinating scenery. The dance adds more glaze to the festivities.


Karma is a very popular folk dance of India. Though the folk dance is performed in other states such as Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, it can be enjoyed the best in Jharkhand. The folk dance is performed in the month of August during the Karma festival.

This folk dance of Jharkhand has derived its name from a tree named Karma which is considered sacred because people believe that it brings good luck and prosperity. Hence the Karma festival is nothing but a celebration for the plantation of this tree.

Karma at Jharkhand seeks the participation of both men and women. The festival starts with the plantation of trees after which the dancers get into a circle and dance with their hands around each other's waists. While dancing, they pass on the branch of the tree to each other.

After the branch of Karma gets a complete circle, it is washed with milk and rice. It is the belief of the local tribes that after these rituals, the branch should not touch the earth. After this, once again the branch is raised in between the dancers.


Santhal is a very popular folk dance of Jharkhand. It is a group dance performed by Santhal tribes of Jharkhand. This dance was performed by the Santhal tribes during all special festivals and occasions. This dance not only reveals the culture or traditions of the local tribes but also showcases the strength of unity.

The main attraction of the Santhal dance in Jharkhand are the colorful costumes worn by the tribal people. The typical garments worn by men during the Santhal are dhoti and a turban but the main attraction is their body decoration with various species of flora. Since the Santhal are believed to be close to nature, they use natural things such as leaves, branches and flowers to do their make-up and design their clothes.

Last Updated on : 25th March 2013