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Navaratri: Key Differences Between Garba and Dandiya

Are you unsure of the distinctions between Garba and Dandiya? This quick guide will address any of your inquiries.

Navaratri: Key Differences Between Garba and Dandiya

Now that Navaratri has arrived, devotees are eager to perform on Dandiya Garba night. The most enjoyable evenings of the celebrations are those when everyone dresses up in gorgeous, colourful ghagra cholis and dances enthusiastically.

September 26th, marks the start of Navaratri, which lasts for nine arduous days. All around the nation, planning for the dance nights is in full swing. During these joyous evenings, devotees dance the Garba and the Dandiya.

Here is a quick explanation to explain the differences between Garba and Dandiya for those who are unclear.

Garba and Dandiya’s Importance During Navratri

Gujarat is where Garba and Dandiya started. Garba and Dandiya are a dramatisation of a nine-day conflict between Goddess Durga and the demon Mahishasura, which the Goddess ultimately conquered.


Garba was created in Gujarati villages and is now done by Gujarati communities primarily in groups all over India. Typically, the dance is done in a circle, either around a large lamp or a statue of Shakti. It is distinguished by a side-to-side sweeping motion.

The Garba dance style honours all nine manifestations of the mother deity and celebrates womanhood and fertility.


Gujarat is also where Dandiya or Dandiya Raas originated. With dandiya sticks struck in steady beats, this dance is performed in circular patterns.

Also ReadDissecting the Ashtami Bhog Prepared for Durga Puja

What Separates Dandiya From Garba?

  1. Compared to dandiya, garba is more appealing to devotees since it is performed to chants and bhajans.
  2. Garba is performed prior to aarti as a form of worship, and dandiya is typically played for fun in the late evening.
  3. Garba is a hand-based dance that includes a variety of hand and foot gestures as well as sporadic clapping. Played with colourful Dandiya sticks is Dandiya.
  4. While Garba has no such limitations, several Dandiya steps are performed with an even number of participants.
  5. While Dandiya songs are focused on Krishna Leela and his dances with Radha and Gopis, Garba songs are focused on the Goddess.

Why is Dandiya/Garba performed during Navaratri?

Both of the dances performed during Navaratri, garba and dandiya, originated in Gujarat. According to legend, the nine-day battle between Goddess Durga and the demon ruler Mahishasura, in which the Goddess prevailed, is portrayed during Navaratri. As a result, the event is observed with the notion that good has triumphed over evil. These two dancing styles represent the celebration and devotion of the holiday.

Compared to Dandiya, which is performed as a celebration after the aarti, Garba has a greater devotional appeal. Nowadays, the essential purpose is to commemorate the sense of unity that everyone experiences while dancing with their loved ones. Along with the love and devotion for Durga Maa, it is a joyful and happy time.

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Written by Yashika Goel

From Arts and Journalism background, Yashika is a graphic designer and content writer living in Delhi. When not working, you’ll find me eating pasta, travelling, reading books, drinking coffee or painting. Join me as I learn more about myself and show you how to love life daily!

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