Students of the Sebastiar School Of Arts in Perak performing the karagattam dance during the Ponggu Tamil ground events around Malaysia. This is part of the Ponggu Tamil cultural programme by TV network Astro, where Malaysians were flown to Madurai, India and given intensive training in Indian folk arts for 16 days.
A cultural exchange programme allows local youths to pursue their love for Indian folk arts right at the source.
Like the bells adorning the ankles of a dancer, culture is almost synonymous with the Indian subcontinent. Yet, there are still many facets of India’s cultural traditions that remain tucked away in their own corners of the vast country.
Take dance, for instance. Mention Indian dance, and most Malaysians are likely to think of either classical forms like bharatanatyam and kuchipudi, or the mishmash of modern and traditional dance in most Indian films.
Both kinds are fairly prominent here, thanks to their close association with Indian culture.