You must have had already known that Jammu and Kashmir is hailed as the Switzerland of Asia and the Paradise on Earth because of the beauty of nature found here. However, it is not just the land of sheer natural splendour. It houses some of the finest cultures that can be found in India. The cultures of Jammu and Kashmir are quite rich because of the influence of diverse ethnic groups, religions, races, sub-races, etc. Just for example, a huge number of dance forms exist among the traditions of Jammu and Kashmir, which is the contribution of the various groups of people living here. For example, the Hafiza and the Bacha Nagma are said to be influenced by Persian cultures, due to the singing of songs in Sufiana Kalam or lyrics. Similarly, Kud is another form of dance that is practiced mainly near the middle mountain areas of Jammu. It is worth watching the locals participating in this form of dance putting on their extremely beautiful and bright colour clothes. So if you want to discover some unknown culture and their lifestyle then you would definitely have to tour Jammu and Kashmir.


The Kud dance, which is performed by the local people of Jammu’s middle mountain ranges, is basically a ritual to honour the Lok Devatas or the Gods of the people. The Gods are sometimes also referred to as Gramdevatas meaning the Gods of the village. Whatever, the gods may be called as; the real motive is to thank the eternal power for protecting the life of the people, their crops and cattle and also their children. Thus, the participants of this ritual are generally farmers who thank God for protecting them against all sorts of natural calamities. That is why, this is also a ritual that takes place as a celebration for the successful harvesting of the crops, especially the maize.


The people performing in the Kud dance are all local members of Jammu middle mountain range areas. Most of them generally belong to the farmer class. The performers are not professional dancers but they are just the local people and almost all of them take part in the night long ritual of Kud dance. There is no age barrier on the performer’s age and people of all age group are free to participate in the dance form. Furthermore, there is no restriction with the gender of the performers, where all men and women are free to take part.


All men and women get dressed in the best possible manner while they come for participating in the Kud dance rituals. Male and female performers have difference in the kind of attires they wear. The men are generally seen in while Kurtas and Churidars (tops and bottoms) along with turbans on their head with a piece of cloth tied near the hip. Generally, the Kurta and the churidaar are of the same colour, generally white. While the turban and the lace or piece of cloth tied at the hip are generally of the same colour, which is a bright one such as yellow or red, contrasting well with white. Sometimes, these performers are also seen playing shinghas or trumpets as they dance.


The Kud dance form is simple as it is performed by the village farmers of the Jammu middle mountain range people. It is not a dance form that necessarily requires professional dancers. This is the reason why, many tourist who visit Jammu during the monsoon or during the harvest season also gets themselves matching steps with the Kashmiri locals. This is one of the exciting events because it is performed during the night by the bonfire. This takes the participants of this simple dance form to the summit of enjoyment.


The Kud dance form is practiced in accompaniment of playing of traditional musical instruments such as Narshinghas or big trumpets, chhainas, drums and flutes. The combined sounds of these instruments are able to give birth to an amazing musical rhythm, which suits the night chilly atmosphere of these mountainous regions perfectly for grooving around the bonfire. Since, it is one of the simplest traditional folk dance forms in Kashmir tourists are able to learn it quite easily from the locals before they start matching steps with them. So, if you are also interested to spend some days of your Kashmir tour in the traditional Kashmiri way then make it a point to be a part of the harmonious event where Kud dance is performed.

Reaching J&K

You would be able to find a number of ways for reaching Jammu and Kashmir from various other parts of India. However, ones willing to reach Jammu and Kashmir directly from a foreign country may only find fewer flights to the Srinagar airport. There are also many trains and road transport facilities connecting J&K and the rest of India.

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