Popular Cultures: Migrant Street Theatre
Duration: 00:15:32; Aspect Ratio: 1.333:1; Hue: 21.826; Saturation: 0.219; Lightness: 0.305; Volume: 0.474; Cuts per Minute: 2.382; Words per Minute: 9.463
Summary: For a quarter century now, a large number migrants from Uttar Pradesh have been staging a Ramleela on Film City Road, Goregaon, East, Bombay.
This annual event, which is staged over ten days and more, during Dusshera, is very popular among the community living in the area. The performance happens just adjacent to the road. A stage is put up flanking the traffic. There is an enthusiastic participation in performance. As the organizer said, not on camera, he feels that if a young boy can face an audience on stage, he is well equipped to face Bombay. There is a sense of a community negotiating its way through a city.
In 2003, the Shiv Sena mounted a series of attacks on North Indians. They claimed the bhaiyyas were flooding the city, and that eight lac of them were appearing for the Railway Recruitment Board Examination, for posts of gangmen and unskilled labour in the Railways.
They attacked a Varanasi-Bombay train in Kalyan, beat up North Indians and forced some to take outgoing trains.
Subsequently, during election time, the same party tried to woo the North Indians in many Bombay pockets where they are in majority. In this context, too, the tradition of enacting Ramleelas, also becomes an occasion for creating links with political parties, and a way for a community to assert its presence in Bombay, and demand a kind of recognition and patronage from mainstream parties.
Politician: And the entire janta of this area, who are sitting here, I want to make a promise to them, keeping with me all the organizers also.. Now that I have been made a legislator in the Vidhan Sabha for the fourth time, it is my duty that the janta- be it from Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, from the Muslim society, to not be biased towards any, to get all of them respect, to get them protection and solve citizens' problems, and this area should never have any( unclear), to give attention to that….this will be my faith and duty, and I here put up my hands and secure for you the promise- Sri Balaji Thackeray- you must have read in in the newspapers(sic) during Dushera, that we have a loving relationship towards anyone from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, and we want to take this relationship further.
Speech made my a Shiv Sena Legislator, on the concluding day of a Ramleela at Goregaon. A local entertainment from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar is being staged to conclude the twelve days or so of performance. People sit by the roadside and watch. Buses skirt the stage.
Film City road
sons of the soil