Poll season brings big bucks for 'jobless' drummers in Bhopal | bhopal | Hindustan Times
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Poll season brings big bucks for 'jobless' drummers in Bhopal

The cacophony of drums in the ongoing civic poll campaigns may be a perennial source of irritation for the residents but the ceaseless drumming on behalf of candidates has rescued the community of drum players from prospects of a jobless and grim winter.

bhopal Updated: Jan 29, 2015 17:44 IST
HT Correspondent
civic polls
The-campaigning-for-the-upcoming-polls-on-January-31-has-come-to-the-rescue-of-dhol-players-in-Bhopal-Illustration-Jayanto

The cacophony of drums in the ongoing civic poll campaigns may be a perennial source of irritation for the residents throughout the day, but the ceaseless drumming on behalf of candidates has rescued the community of drum (dhol) players from prospects of a jobless and grim winter.

Since there were only a few auspicious days suitable for marriage during the winter, there are fewer opportunities for dhol players to earn in this season. But, the campaigning for the upcoming polls on January 31 has come to the rescue of around 800-1000 dhol players in the city.

"We were facing loss this year but election campaigns rescued us. We never participated in any election campaigning earlier but this year we were compelled to do so. There have been very few marriage ceremonies in the past three months. Unlike other years, this year we have barely played in just 10 to12 marriage ceremonies since November last year, which is just 20% of what we do in an average year," said Deepak Bhatt, who owns Deepak Dhol Group.

However, according to dhol players playing at election campaigns is more time consuming as compared to wedding ceremonies. Earning in election campaigns is also far less than marriages. The Dhol groups earn Rs 10,000-15000 in a marriage ceremony, while at an election campaign furnishes only Rs 3,000-4000.

Another Dhol group owner Ajay Bhatt said despite these election campaignings, they were still facing financial loss. "We are facing 70% loss in our business this year but fortunately election campaigning helped us earn some money. By January, we used to earn Rs 3-4 lakh but this year we have earned just Rs 50,000 till now. Election campaigning has helped us in maintaining financial stability," he said.

However, some such groups are refraining from participating in the election campaigns. "Our drum players prefer to participate in wedding ceremonies only. We received some offers for election campaigns but we refused them. Last three months have been completely dry in terms of business but we are expecting good business from the next month," said Vicka owner of Band of Punjabi Group.