The Phagali Festival of the Seraj Valleys is usually celebrated in the month of February or march. Traditionally an eight day fair is held with some amazing mask dance and the voices of Gods being transcribed by the local Gurs to the people of the Seraj Valley. Interestingly Kullu which is also called the Valley of Gods have four distinct seasons and all rituals here are carried out according to the Hindi Calendar .
Phaguli Festivities :
The Phaguli fair starts with a ritual where local youth put on demon masks and performs traditional dances in front of the Himalayan folkways .The villagers pour out from every nook and corned unhindered by snow or broken roads. As per Hindu calendar, the Phagli Fair is held in the month of Phagun (February/March)and hence gets the name Phagli i.e. Fair held in the months of Phagun. Before this falls the local month of Magh (January/February) when all the local Gods go in hibernation. This period is known as “Gupa” in the local dialect . As per local belief, during the period of this hibernation, the Gods show the struggle of supremacy between the God and demon through meditation. If Gods are not victorious then the local residents have to face the wrath of nature upon themselves and their animals. However victory implies safety from the elements of nature and hence the festival is held to commemorate the event of killing the demon by the God.
Masked Dance :
During the festival a spokesperson of God known as Gur carries out a special dance form known as Deo Khadi or Deo Khel (Dance of Gods) and Raksh Khadi or Raksh Khel (Dance of demons) along with rhythm of local drum beats. During the performance of these dances Gur ( Shaman ) announces the result of hibernation (Gupa) period and advices people to take next appropriate action for the well being of local public, their animals and crops.