Culture & Heritage
Nabarangpur District has an ancient tradition of Art and Culture, which was predominantly displayed in the erstwhile Koraput District. A large number of artisans, mostly residing in a street of Nabarangpur town, carry on the age-old handicraft. They manufacture boxes, toys, sticks, chains, pedestals of Hindu Gods and Goddesses, idols of other Gods and Goddesses, pooja articles and other decorative master pieces, which are unique in the area and testify exemplary craftsmanship. ‘Dhanya Laxmi’ (Goddess Laxmi with pedestal) is a unique craft in paddy carried on by the artisans of Dabugaon area in the District. Earthen works of Tonda near Papadahandi also testify exquisite craftsmanship.
Languages like Bhotra, Gond, Kandha, Paraja, Odiya, Hindi and Telugu are widely spoken in Nabarangpur District. Tribals of the District perform folk dance like Rinjodi, Dhemsha, Sailodi, Gond, Geet Kudia, Ghumura, Madhia etc. Male and female tribals take part in the dance with exuberance amidst melodious song and beat of drums in the background.The Toys, Boxes, Pedestals of Hindu Gods and Goddess, Puja Articles and other decorative master pieces made by the local craftsmen proves the magnificent work in the respective field.
Maa Bhandargharani in Nabarangpur is the presiding deity of the locality. The name signifies the preserver of wealth and protector of lives. She is also worshipped in nearby villages. Tuesdays and Saturdays are marked for special worships. Devotees gather in a large number in the temple premises on every conceivable occasion to seek blessings of the Goddess. Maa Pendrani of Umerkote which is visited by large number of devotees is born out of a legend. A small village Pendra (Pendrahandi), near Umerkote, worships a pure soul named Pendrani, a married girl who was the victim of secret jealousy of her own brothers.
Mondei is a local festival being widely celebrated in the Nabarangpur District. The word Mondei is derived from the Hindi word ‘Mondi’ which means a small market. This festival is celebrated by large number of people worshipping a common deity among pre- historic rituals. Fair and entertainment activities with folk dances and tribal opera can be seen for the whole night in the festival. Mondei is usually celebrated after harvesting of crops. The festival is observed at different popular locations through out the District gathering men and women of the area and far off.There are various Socio Cultural organizations which play vital role in spearheading the cultural activities of the Nabarangpur District.