Website Impact! Bride Rakshitha Arasa Invites Blind Music Group’ to Perform at her ‘Mehndi’
Talk about a Traditional, filled with Customs and Rituals held in a glittering and glamorous celebration, but most of all quite Unique, for the fact, that Members of a Blind Music Group, “Sri Sharada Andhara Geethagayana Kala Sangha” (SSAGKS) (Sri Sharada Blind Singers’ Association) enthralled the guests with their melodious music, which was First of its kind at a Hindu Mehndi Ceremony in Kudla- and it was Bride-to-Be Rakshitha Arasa, the daughter Bhasker Arasa (who calls himself the “King of Kings”) and Ms Geetha Arasa, Rakshitha who made her special day by inviting this Blind Music Group’ to Perform at her ‘Mehndi’ Function, after she read their story in Mangalorean.com.
Mangaluru: A article “They Can’t See, But They Can Sing! Blind Band Members Enthrall Crowd on Kudla Street” dated 14 January 2018 which was published in Mangalorean.com, and read by one of our ardent readers Rakshitha Arasa residing in Bengaluru, convinced her so much, that she wanted them to play at her “Mehndi” function if the Band was ready to do so. Communicating with her dad Bhasker Arasa, who boasts about himself as “King of Kings” (he wish?) because of his Surname to get details on the Band, and Bhasker being a great friend of Violet Pereira-Proprietor of Mangalorean.com contacted Yours Truly of Team Mangalorean, and then it was history. One evening when the SSAGKS were performing near Kadri Market, I took Bhasker to witness them performing, he literally liked their music to the “Core”, (The signature word of Bhasker?) and requested them to sing couple of his favorite songs, including “Kodagana Koli nungitta, noddava thangi Kodagana Koli nungitta…” (Oh sister, Hen has swallowed the Monkey), which the singers readily agreed and entertained Bhasker, who tipped them big time?
Over the centuries, Mehndi has become so ingrained in Indian tradition that today the Mehndi ceremony is one of the major celebrations before the wedding. Mehndi is yet another traditional yet exciting pre-wedding ceremony. A lot of emphasis is given on customs and rituals and the same is reflected in the Mehndi ceremony before marriage. Mehendi ceremony has become such an integral part of the wedding ceremony that it cannot be imagined without it. Furthermore, Mehndi is one of the sixteen adornments of the bride and her beauty is incomplete without it. Mehndi ceremony usually takes place just before marriage. Mehndi ceremony is essentially organized by the family of the bride and is usually a private affair which takes place in the presence of friends, relatives and family members. However, the scale of the ceremony depends upon individual choice. Some people celebrate it with great pomp and show- and for that matter, this Mehndi of Arasa’s speaks in volume of grandeur, Pomp and Exhuberance
This is the day when Mehndi is applied on the hands and feet of the bride and even the groom. While the bride has a very elaborate pattern done on her hands and feet, the groom usually has just a token design. Mehndi is a very important part of the Hindu wedding. It is a common belief that the darker the colour the mehndi leaves on the hands of a bride, the more will she be loved by her husband and mother-in-law. I hope so? However, the significance of applying mehndi during weddings is not restricted just to sentiments and beliefs. Although these beliefs make the application of mehndi a much anticipated and charming tradition, the actual reason is of much deeper significance, which is sometimes forgotten in the present day.
With the daughter falling in Love with this ‘Blind Band Group’ and Father liking their performance to the “Core?”, after discussion with the band members, they agreed to perform at the Mehndi function on Friday, 23 February held at the picturesque and scenic “Lobo’s Riverview ” venue-Morgan’s Gate-Mangaluru. Rakshitha Arasa, aged 26, a Lead analyst at an NMC firm ‘Sutherland Global services’ based in Bengaluru, attired in her glittering outfit was all set for the great fun-filled evening-and also mingling with her would-be-hubby Bridegroom, Ganesh Prasad Shetty, practicing as a Tax Consultant in Mumbai, was looking forward to this precious moment in her life- and in the end, it did turn out to be the “Most Liked Unique Mehndi Party” as complimented by the guests, who enjoyed the open-air ambiance by the riverside, the traditional and Cultural Ceremony, above all, the scintillating and melodious music by the blind musicians.
Have you ever thought how difficult it is to be a famous musician especially when you are visually impaired? It is not easy as you may think but thanks to the passion, dedication, and help from many mentors, several have attained their dream and become renowned around the world. They say that if you lose one sense, the other four become stronger. Looking at the list of some of the famous blind people it would seem that the old adage is true. Many famous blind people have become successful and influential musicians. Several others have become successful athletes, politicians, actors and so on. And when our govt/politicians have turned a “Blind Eye” or probably gone blind towards the blind people, here are a bunch of blind people who had decided to stand on their own feet, without begging for aid from the govt, by starting their own music group, and enthralling the crowd on streets, at functions and mini-concerts. And they are a phenomenon, who have been receiving loud applause from all quarters.
These blind folks, totally around 15 of them, hailing from Sringeri and in the vicinity of Chikkamagaluru district, who were very much fascinated and had passion towards music wanted to start a Music Group of their own, decided to form the ” Sri Sharada Andhara Geethagayana Kala Sangha (Sri Sharada Blind Singers’ Association) in Kanchinagara, Sringeri Ashraya colony in Chikkamagaluru district, eight months ago. Ever since their Band inception 8 months ago, the Band members have given over 100 performances in and around Mangaluru- and beyond. They have also performed in Kaup and Udupi recently. (More details of the Band click on the earlier article Link below)
The musicians entertained the guests with Kannada, Tulu, Marathi, Hindi and also Konkani. The Band played for an hour with the request songs of the Bride & Bridegroom, their parents and relatives- and everyone lauded their talents even though they were blind, with thunderous applauds. Even encores poured in, but all in vain- since the time was limited, and the young crowd wanted to shake their hips and lift their legs for some peppy Bollywood hits belted out by Dj Sham. The Bride had all good words to say about the Blind Music Group, and she was very much touched and felt that it was a blessing that she gave a chance to these people with disabilities to perform at a Mehndi function. Indeed a kind gesture and thoughtfulness of Rakshitha Ararsa. The Mehndi was attended by a large number of journos, whom Bhasker Arasa was associated, including the Team Mangalorean – and everyone had a blast and fun-filled evening. The wedding of Rakshitha and Ganesh was held on Sunday, 25 February, attended by a large gathering, including media personnel.
Finally, a message the members of the band-where Shivamallu and Yogish said, ” We want the citizens to think that we are also humans like them, even though we are blind. Let there not be discrimination between the blind and the normal. Be it, the blind people or other disabled persons, we too hold a very special place in the society. We are also able to catch the emotions of other folks easily and hence our presence in the community makes it more effective. We need the love and affectionate of the people, and we are very grateful to the people around here who have been very supportive and helped us in our day to day life. Also our sincere thanks to Mangalorean.com for making us known to the society that “Blind People” also can make their dream come true if there is determination and will. .We sincerely thank the Bride/Bridegroom and their families for giving us a chance to perform at a Mehndi, which is our first gig at such an event. Thank you all”.
Ever since their performance at the Mehndi, “The Blind Band Group” have received quite a few calls asking for their details etc. You too can call them at: 9480591770; 8277699352; 9980316858