Art and Culture of DharDhar is a historical city, ruled by many of famous Hindu and Muslim rulers. Thus, impact of various cultures is visible in every part of this ancient town of Madhya Pradesh. Since ancient times, Dhar has been a culturally rich part of Malwa region. Literature, dance, music, painting, sculpture and several other art forms are an integral part of this city’s past and present. Traditional art and craft of Dhar has got recognition on national and international both levels. Bagh prints, Pithora paintings, leather and metal articles, beadwork are some of the finest examples of unique art and craft of this part of Madhya Pradesh. Since Dhar is a tribal dotted region, folk songs and dances are also common part of people’s lives in this region.
Folk Songs and Dances of DharSince ancient times, Dhar has been a center of art and culture development. It is also said that during middle of 16th century, music got major attention and developed attaining perfection in entire region of Malwa. Dhar has got a rich heritage of Indian literature, music, dance, painting and sculpture. Baaz Bahadur, famous ruler of this region, contributed a lot in encouraging and art and culture. His attachment to Rani Roopmati became source of inspiration for music and songs in this region. After long time, still famous love story of Baaz Bahadur and his beloved, Roopmati inspire young generation of Dhar. Many of the famous folk songs are based upon Baaz Bahadur and Roopmati. Community bhajan singing is part of traditional music in rural areas of this district. Usually, people gather in villages on the chaupals in night and traditional bhajans and songs are sung with the accompaniment of various musical instruments including harmonium (peti), tabla, dholak, manjire, thali, mridang, mandal, kundi, payli, zanch, and dhak etc. Folk dances are also popular among locals and enjoyed with lot of amusement.
Religions in DharDhar is home to people from various religions and communities that make it culturally diverse. Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism, Buddhism, Jainism and Christianity are the main religions in this district. Besides, a major part of population consists of tribal communities. Bhils and Bhilals are the main tribes in this district. Being a city having residents from various cultural backgrounds and communities, Dhar is also rich in terms of languages. Hindi is the official language as well as language of local communication in this part of Madhya Pradesh. Urdu, Marwari, Gujarati, Nimadi, Malvi and Marathi are other languages spoken in this region.
Festivals in DharDue to presence of people from various communities and religions, a number of festivals are celebrated in district of Dhar. Holi, Diwali, Dusshera, Vasant Panchami, Maha Shivaratri, Ramnavmi, Janmashtami, Raksha-Bandhan, Nag-Panchmi, Ganesh Chaturthi, Anant Chaturdashi, Sarva Pitri Amavsya, Dol Gyaras, Hanuman Jayanti are some of the Hindu festivals celebrated with much fervor in this district. Besides, Shradha Paksha (fortnight) is also celebrated from Bhadra Poornima to Kunwar Amavasya by Hindus with much devotion.
Along with Muharram, Id and Miladunabi are among popular festivals celebrated by Muslim community in this region with great enthusiasm. Christmas and Good Friday are main festivals celebrated in Dhar by Christians. Mahavir Jayanti and Paryooshan are popular among Jains. Regionally, in few particular castes, Radeoji and Tejaji Jayantis are celebrated with katha and puja annually. However, dates and traditions of these pujas vary as per tehsils. Thus, Dhar has a long list of festivals which are celebrated with fun and frolic by all communities.