Wed, 24 January 2024

Bongko is a spectacular, cheerful and jovially celebratory local cultural festival held in most parts of upper Haa. It is mainly held in Yangthang, Bali, Dumchu, Kibri, Tshaphel and Kana communities. The event is held in these communities once every three years, on days determined by the local astrologers.

The history of the cultural event goes back to the olden days and it is mainly conducted to propitiate local and other protective deities and to ward off evil forces for the year and beyond and bless them with fortune and good times. The whole community, young and old alike, comes together in their finery to take part in the event, that lasts for about three consecutive days.

The event consists of elaborate preliminary prep rituals on the first day, followed by the main performances on the second day, and the closing rituals on the third and the final day.

Postscript: Photos are that of the Tshaphel Bongko held on 24 January 2024.