‘Dhaff' beats echo at folk-art competition

Staff Correspondent

18 teams from

four districts participated in

the event

MANGALORE: The crescendo of the rhythmic beats of the “dhaff” (a kind of tambourine) played by young boys dressed in simple costumes echoed through the Don Bosco Hall here on Tuesday at a competition organised by the Beary Sahitya Academy.

This is said to be the maiden Statewide dhaff competition organised by the academy. Eighteen teams of boys from Dakshina Kannada, Udupi, Hassan, and Chikmagalur districts participated in the event.

Dhaff music, consisting of only beating of the percussion instrument and a song, forms an integral part of celebrations in this region, according to G. Usman, one of the performers. The musicians themselves compose songs for weddings, urs and baby showers, besides performing traditional dance numbers.

The competition was inaugurated by Manu Baligar, Director, Department of Kannada and Culture, who also released “Nilaavu”, a Beary monthly magazine.

‘Need recognised'

Mr. Baligar said that the Government recognised the need to preserve languages such as Beary, Konkani, Tulu, Kodava spoken by small communities. “These languages must develop alongside Kannada. It is with this objective that the sahitya academies have been set up,” he said and added that the Government did not look at the size of the population that spoke a particular language while granting funds. “In fact, grants to sahitya academies have tripled over the last few years. Globalisation is a major threat to regional languages and local cultures. We must revive such languages in novel ways,” Mr. Baligar said.

Bannanje Babu Amin, scholar on folk traditions, spoke about the similarities between Beary and Tulu.


President of the academy M.B. Abdul Rehman thanked Mr. Baligar for the support that the cultural body had received from him right from its inception.