Inside a mango grove

Inside a mango grove

Inside a mango grove

It was a luscious Sunday at one of the most popular spaces in the City, Ranga Shankara, where one could joyfully witness the ‘aadmi’ savouring the ‘aam’.  As it enters its twelfth year, ‘Mango Party’ carries the vibrant momentum, which only grows manifold every year

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Visitors bring one kilo of mangoes of any variety and eat them together. Dressed either in bright yellow or a sequinned green, visitors were found fondly scooping the fruit, licking the seasonal varieties until the last, luscious bite, bonding with new friends and making some great memories. The cafe also offered special treats such as ‘aam lassi’, mango rice, mango kulfi and desserts.

A tropical fruit and a tangible aspect of the Indian tradition, the objective of the party is to celebrate the ‘fruit of the community spirit’ as the festival fosters the idea of kinship.

Arundhati Nag, the artistic advisor of Ranga Shankara, describes the festival as an important aspect of her life. “We shared a few mangoes with our workers during the construction of the building. Gradually, we decided that it would be a good idea to open the invitation to public.”

Arundhati Nag mentions that one of the hero’s this year was Syed Ghani Khan from Kirgaval village, a place 24 km from Mandya. “Syed has a mango grove where some trees date back to Tipu Sultan’s times. We saw about 125 variety of mangoes in his grove. Some of these names are varieties which we have never heard of. We contacted him and showcased most of the varieties this year. Every mango looks similar but
tastes different.”

 Guests were invited to share mango-related dishes with others. Nafisa and her band ‘Not A Number’ also lightened the atmosphere by performing there.

The ‘Mango Party’ has fresh aspects every year but they stay true to their principle, that is staying away from commercial constraints and seeing to it that the popularity doesn’t overshoot purpose. “There is no item for sale at ‘Mango Party’ unlike many festivals in the City. In these modern times, where everything has a price tag, we expect nothing from people, maybe except one kilo of mangoes,” she laughs.

She adds that the celebrities here are the mangoes and people who realise the energy, continue to come. The festival is indeed a day to savour the king of fruits and celebrate the joie-de-vivre of the City.

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