Hundreds throng to celebrate Kunde Habba

Members of various tribal communities dancing in joy as a part of ‘Kunde Habba’ near                    Devarapura in Gonikoppa, on Thursday. DH Photo

The festival is called ‘Kunde Habba’ and on Thursday the tribals scolded people whom they came across, with abuses and swear words known best to their knowledge.
During the two day long festival, Titimati near Devarapura, Gonikoppa, Palibetta, Ponnampet, Kutta, Srimangala and nearby areas echo foul language.

The tribals dress fancily for the festival, dance on streets and go houses to houses, shops to shop begging for alms. Before they receive alms, they scold the persons in front of them as they wish.

Broken plastic bottles, jackfruit peel, old metal sheets, kerosene tins etc are worn by these tribals as ornaments. Some even dress like women and dance. Without any mercy and sympathy, these tribals go out on street shouting, scolding people using abusive words. Even women are not spared.

The money thus earned is used by the tribals to buy liquor. The drunk tribals were seen fallen on roadsides in most of the areas where this festival is celebrated.

When police tried to lift the drunken tribals who fell on the middle of the street, the
tribals gave a piece of their mind even to the policemen. Since the scoldings are taken in right spirit by everyone, even police were seen laughing it off.

Oceanic crowd of tribal gathered near Bhadrakali Ayyappa temple near Devapura at about 2 pm near South Kodagu.

When it came to dancing and merrymarking, it was not just tribals but there were people from various communities who shook their legs to some fancy, desi beats.

Those who offered vows fulfilled the same by offering chicken to the diety. While most of the places have the custom of slaughtering the chicken, here at this temple, the chicken is thrown in air and the hysteric crowd tried to catch the same. Several chicken were torn into pieces by the gathering.

Later in the evening the money collected by the devotees was offered to the diety and each of the devotees who took part in te festival asked for forgivesness from the god for using abusive language throughout the day.

The legend has it that Goddess Bhadrakali had once taken the Kuruba community members for hunting in the woods. Soon she abandoned them and went ahead for some other work.

 This raged the community members who scolded and abused the goddess for leaving them half the way. Since the community members scolded and addressed the goddess as ‘Kunde’, the festival is called ‘Kunde Habba’ and scolding became an integral part of the festival.

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