CANACONA – After a gap of almost two years due to Covid-19 induced SOP’s, the traditional Shigmo celebrations had become wilder as most groups resumed the customary practices of offering food to the visiting groups.
In Canacona, traditional Shigmo groups belong to Community wise, Veeramel is known to have the highest inherited overtones in its celebration and observance.
While most villages and areas have their own group, Velips lead one of the main Shigmo groups called Veeramel into the villages, including Poinguinim.
Different sections or Castes and communities such as Gomantak Maratha Samaj, Kshetriya Maratha Samaj, Komarpant Samaj, Sarawast Samaj, Kshetriya Pagi Samaj (have 7-set of groups (vangdi)), in different parts of Canacona Taluka.
While Poinguinim had two main Shigmo Mell’s, including Veeramel (by Velips), another Shigmo group called Manipkari virtually participated by all communities, besides different communities of Galgibaga, Talpona has separate Shigmo groups.
Metri Samaj of Poinginnim village (Galgibaga) takes out a specific Shigmo with the flag and plaque of Soundekar Raja.
Palolem, Chaudi, Patnem, besides some more municipal areas, are also known for Gomantak Maratha Samaj, Kshetriya Maratha Samaj, and Komarpant Samaj Shigmo groups who play in their respective community houses.
There are also long-drawn traditions in the entire Taluka where the members of Shigmo groups prepare foods during the afternoon and nighttime and offer them to the visiting member in many areas.
While Loliem-Polem has six main Shigmo groups that offer only vegetarian goods to its members, traditions are kept alive in serving non-veg foods in several parts of the taluka.
It is understood that lakhs of rupees expenditure is made on food preparations including non – veg items such as Mutton, Chicken, Big Fish Dishes, besides rice items on the menu.
Gaondongrim, Khotigao, Shrishthal, and Gulem, traditionally having the highest ST populations and traditional forms of Dando as Ancient habits, don’t lag but have their castewise Shigmo groups, while Dhangars residing in certain parts of the taluka also revels in traditional Shigmo festivities.
Agonda, Khola, Shrishthal areas also have their number of Shigmo groups playing and visiting households. Khola has a Shigmo troupe of Sarawast Samaj, while most groups are from working-class communities.
In some communities, the Shigmo celebrations end on Wednesday, while for others, the festivities will be continued till Friday.
It is expected there will be about 40 different groups celebrating Shigmo in Canacona. Some of the well-known names of Shigmo groups in Canacona are Polekar, Pedekar, Shelikar, Agaskar, Karaikar, Tanshikar, in Loliem-Polem village, while Toneam-khell, Ghoff-Vinnem, Talgadi-Marne, Chourang-Khelne, are different types of playing methods practiced by different visiting Mells.