The classical and other dances are displayed on the occasion of nawroze (21st March), and on the marriages of Rajas etc. These can be classified into Sword Dances, Broqchhos and Dewan or Ghazal.

The following are the names of the sword dances:

1.                  CHHOGHO PRASUL

It commemorates a great victory by the Maqpon Rajas over their enemies. As a mark of respect the musician who plays on the drum or ‘DANG’ stands up and goes on playing on it for sometime. It is worthy of note that the Maqpon princes would sometimes dance when this tune was played.

2.                  GASHO – PA

This sword dance is associated with the Gasho Dynasty of Purik (Kargil) who loomed large in this region one time. It is also called ‘GHBUS – LA – KHORBA’.


It commemorates the advent of spring.


This dance specifically performed on the occasion of the marriages of Rajas. In it the PACHONES or twelve Wazirs who accompany the bride take part.

5.                  JING HRCHES OR THE NECK DANCE

In the early stages the dancers move their necks to and fro.

6.                  KHOSHALPA

In the above dances seven or more persons take part.

7.                  THEN – KAR

Only two persons take part in this dance.

8.                  AFGHANI

This is one man’s display of dance with two swords one in each hand.

Next to the Sword dances comes BROQCHOS which include ‘FURGON KAR’ or Pigeon dance, CHURUKPA, HLANO KAR or Fairy Dance and SHOLI are well known. The dance that is played to the tune of the ‘GHAZAL’ is called DEWAN.

MAQPONI FUTUNG KAR or Maqpon’s Sleeve Dance is a dance that is displayed to the tune of the folk – lore called Amir Haider depicting the downfall of the Maqpon Dynasty in 1840 at the hand of the Dogras. This dance is specially displayed at Khaplu to perpetuate the memory of indignities suffered by the Maqpons. This tune is not played in the presence of any Maqpon prince.


This dance commemorates the victory of Yabgo over Raja Ghori Tham. It is confined to village PHARWA.

It may be mentioned that there are certain tunes which are played on special occasions. CHILAHO tune is played when the royal bride is taken out from the palace. LAMSNA tune is played when the Raja goes out in procession ‘BAM’ is a war tune.

From the statement of eye – witnesses it is confirmed that as late as 1910 women took part in dances along with men in the valley of Khaplu. But this custom has now come to an end. In the past there used to be dancing girls called ‘BEKARMO’ and ‘MALAKH ANMO’.



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