The most fantastic colourful festival of the Arunachal Pradesh is the’ Chalo loku’ which is derived from Cha meaning paddy, Lo meaning season and loku means festival. It is celebrated in the month of October and November every year once the harvest of the paddy field is ripe and is ready to be harvested. This marks the onset of the Jhum cultivation.
The popular feature of this festival is the preparation of rice beer. The last three days of the festival are very special and they are named as Phamlamja, Chamkatja and Thanlangja.
On the second day of the festival all the people join together in the outskirts of the village and offer prayers led by the chief for the well being of the villagers as well as for a better yield. They eat their meal and drink beer soon after the prayer is done. After finishing the having the meal, they arrived to the chief house dancing. On reaching the chief’s house they dance for 2 to 3 hours and blank fire is blowed from their guns.
“Chamwangbong” is the dance performed at the time. They change into the traditional ceremony attire after taking rest and continue with their dance.
The first day ‘Phamlamja’ is special because of the preparation of the rice beer.
On the “Thanglangja” morning after the omen is predicted by breaking the eggs, they start to select plots for jhum cultivation. Then the villagers visit each other’s houses and celebrate by feasting and drinking. Soon after that, the villages visit the chief’s house and in his courtyard they eat and drink and also so bid farewell to their festival with the song.
In the song they request loku to bring good harvest next year with blessings and a new spirit.