Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): Jenzadrunrai, an indigenous string instrument of Odisha, is the Exhibit of the Month at Veethi Sankul, an indoor gallery of Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya here.
The exhibition inaugurated by assistant curator Rakesh Kumar Bhatt recently is part of the popular museum series. The exhibit was collected by assistant keeper Sudipa Roy and museum associate P Anuradha.
Jenzadrunrai is an indigenous string instrument used by Lanjia Saora tribe of Odisha for vocal accompaniment. The Saora tribe is found in hilly tract of eastern ghat region of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh. It has sub tribes that can be easily identified by their distinct social customs, peculiarity of dress, mode of living and livelihood means.
They play a variety of musical instruments on different occasions. The noisy percussion and sonorous instruments like drums of different sizes (Dagru), blowing pipes (Tretepe), cymbals, brass gongs (Neneng), brass bell (Tinarjap) and clarinets are played during agricultural festivals whereas fiddle (Gogerai), string instrument and rasps are popular at weddings.
Making of Jenzadrunrai needs experienced hands of males as it requires great skill and indigenous knowledge. A half sliced gourd resonator is tied loosely to a bamboo stick. Two metal strings attached to one end of the stick and tied through the other end.
While playing, the gourd is placed against the chest and the string is struck by the right hand. The lower string of the instrument plays the melody while the upper acts as drone. The bamboo stick is decorated with geometric designs and symbols. Most designs are inspired from nature.
The sound of Jenzadrunrai is very pleasing. It is played in the evening after completing the whole day's work. The sweet sound of the instrument travels far distance in silence. They sing songs and play instrument and drink local liquor (mahua daru or salfi). It brings happiness and satisfaction.
The Lanjia Saora Highlanders are one of the Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTG) living in the eastern ghat region of Gajapati district and Gunpur subdivision of Rayagada district of Odisha. They hunt, do shift cultivation and terrace cultivation on hilly slopes.