Rites of Passage: A Study of the Hanji Community Living in the Bandipora District of Kashmir Valley

Each culture has its own set of customs and traditions. Beginning with birth and concluding with death, the life cycle is a metaphor for the journey of an individual through the phases of life. This includes childhood, youth, adulthood, and old age. Rituals are especially crucial for events that occur throughout the course of a life cycle since they both cause and symbolise transformations. Throughout key life cycle events and transitions, such as birth, marriage, and death, traditions are frequently observed. These are all common life cycle phases. Religious and cultural societies employ a number of rites to commemorate the transition from infancy to maturity. This study was primarily focused on the life cycle rituals of the Hanji group, which encompassed pre-birth, birth, marriage, and death. The fundamental purpose of the research was to discover not only the hidden significance of the rituals observed by the fishing communities of the Kashmir valley, but also the pattern of their evolution over time. This article is based on primary data that was collected between the years May 2019 and January 2022 as part of the phd fieldwork in the Haanji community of the Bandipora district in Jammu and Kashmir, using various anthropological research tools and methods like participant observation, focus group discussions, case studies, and interviews.