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News18 » India
2-min read

Not just speeches, but folk music, dances adorn election rallies in Haryana

Local artists were seen putting their best foot forward to entertain the crowds, in turn also convincing them to vote in favour of the BJP.

Rashi Mathur, Shikha Pushpan

Updated:October 12, 2014, 12:17 PM IST
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Not just speeches, but folk music, dances adorn election rallies in Haryana
Local artists were seen putting their best foot forward to entertain the crowds, in turn also convincing them to vote in favour of the BJP.

Jind: Colour and fervour have always been an integral part of election rallies in India. Be it a Lok Sabha election, an assembly election or even the local and gram panchayat elections, every campaign has a different but colourful fragrance.

Similar were the scenes on Saturday as people waited for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to descend from his chopper at the Vijay Sankalp rally at Pandu Pandara village in Jind ahead of the Haryana Assembly elections. Local artists in Jind were seen putting their best foot forward to entertain the crowds, in turn also convincing them to vote in favour of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

Coupled with the tunes of clay pot (mitti ka ghada), dholak and harmonium, 'Jitendra Padana and Company' danced on Haryanvi folk songs. The songs, weren't just the regular folk numbers, they were all 'custom made' to suit the BJP's election rally.

"Ayegi BJP sarkar, Congress hovegi sharmsar, Chautala khada na ho payega (BJP government will come to power, Congress will be embarrassed and Chautala won't even stand a chance)," sang one of the artists in full spirits attracting huge applaud and cheers from the crowd at the rally. With a group of eight people, Jitendra claims that he specialises in songs for election campaigning.

And it's not about loyalties, they say. They take equal interest in rallies of other parties too and perform there with the same excitement as well. "We don't care about which party we are performing for. This is our job. The songs do not reflect our preferences," the head of the group, Jitendra said.

For INLD rallies, one of their slogans is, "Yo pota tau Devi Lal ka, hai bada kamal ka (Devi Lal's grandson is simply wonderful)."

Such artists are hired and remunerated by political parties to entertain the crowds at rallies. The price range for such shows varies. "We are paid Rs 11,000 per hour for a performance in the rallies," he said.

Travelling through the state for rallies of all political parties, Jitendra claims it is an evenly fought contest between the BJP, Congress and the INLD in the polls. "It is tough to say who will win this time. The sitting MLA in Jind might be from INLD but that does not give him the surety that he will win."

However, oblivious to the final tally, the only thing that matters for artists and groups like 'Jitendra Padana and Company', is this season, 'the election season'.

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