Scribble and Scrawl

By Somali K Chakrabarti

Festivals to commemorate ancient maritime traditions in South East Asia

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  • Baliyatra, meaning a ‘Voyage to Bali‘, is a festival celebrated every year in coastal Orissa on Karthika purnima, the Full moon day of October-November to commemorate Orissa’s glorious maritime history.

  • Masakapan Ke Tukad, is a Balinese festival where toy boats are floated in memory of maritime ancestors.

  • Loy Brah Prahdip or LoyKrathong, meaning ‘the floating of lamps at night’, is a festival of Thailand that is celebrated in December (twelfth month of Kartika). During this festival, little rafts, made of plantain stems and decorated with flags, paper umbrellas, incense sticks, and lighted candles, with offerings of food and flowers, are set adrift on the river by people living near its banks.

Thus, the three festivals, with similar celebrations consisting of ritualistic floating of toy boats, are celebrated…

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