Raut Nacha is a renowned dance form of Chhattisgarh
. It is an exclusive preserve of the cowherd community called Raut or Yadav. It is an enactment of a legendary battle in which a king named Khansa was defeated by the Yadav clan, who were led by Lord Krishna
. This dance is performed after Diwali
in a week long affair that celebrates the legendary victory.
The dancers in the Raut Nacha attire themselves in glittering costumes. Wielding sticks and metal shields they recreate the scene of battle. They dance to the tunes produced by the folk instruments and occasionally get into a mock duel. The bells tied to their waist produce the extra feel needed for the festive occasion.