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Meet Kashmir’s ‘Bacche Koutt’ – ‘Dancing Man’ who Dresses Like Women and Performs

Written by Nusrat Ali

Video By: Abid Salam | Article By: Nusrat Ali

A ‘Bacche koutt’ Mohamad Ashraf father of five children is still trying to keep the age old tradition of singing and dancing alive in Baramulla, despite facing harsh criticism. For doing this dance especially in wedding parties, Ashraf wears women attire. He still has enthusiasm to keep his passion for dance alive.

In Kashmiri wedding parties a ‘Bacche koutt’ is often seen dancing mostly during the night hours in a room full of people, both male and female. These men dresses like girls, wear a long frock, do make up on the face and perform. They mostly do this out of passion and make this thing their profession. But this profession is stigmatized. They are looked upon as gay and often get problem to settle down in society.

“People keep talking that our father wears female attire and he is a gay. This thing do not bother us. He has given us every facility and it is our source of income. It is Kashmiri culture and we tell him to keep it alive. I am proud of what my father is doing,” says Ashraf’s daughter.

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Nusrat Ali

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