The Festival: In Goa, Catholics celebrate all the feasts of the Roman Catholic Church, which include the feast of St John the Baptist on June 24 (John the Baptist because he had baptised Jesus Christ on the river Jordan).
- The youngsters in Goa celebrate this occasion with revelry and perform daredevil feats, by jumping into overflowing wells or rivulets to commemorate the leap of joy, which St John is said to have taken in the womb of his mother St Elizabeth when virgin Mary visited her.
- Villagers gather near the well and cheer for those throwing and dunking themselves into the water. Full-throated renditions of Konkani songs written for the occasion are accompanied by traditional musical instruments like the gumott and cansaim(cymbal).
- In Baga, sangoddis celebrated as a part of the feast of St John the Baptist. Two boats are tied together to make a sangodd, which means union, unity and junction. The tying of the boat signifies the unity of the village.
- Importance assigned to new sons-in-law: In Goa, Sao Joao is an occasion for the family and the villagers to get to know their newlywed daughters’ husbands a little better. Traditionally, the new son-in-law would be crowned with festive headgear of fruits and leaves, taken around the village, and would then jump into the well with other revelers.
Source: The Indian Express