Political campaigning in West Bengal is getting an artistic touch with street plays and dance dramas being held at election rallies.
At the forefront is the CPI(M)’s cultural wing, the Indian People’s Theatre Association (IPTA), which once had luminaries like Utpal Dutt and Habib Tanvir.
The group is staging a number of street dance, plays and docu-dramas during election rallies and meetings across the state. One of the programmes that the IPTA has been showing is a documentary titled Ashanto Somoy.
“It’s about the violence-struck Jangalmahal and how people are carrying on with life amid the bloodbath. Shot by award winning photographer Arunava Ganguly, the 20-minute documentary has real shots of the people of Jangalmahal,” says Shankar Mukhopadhyay of the IPTA.
Amal Chakraborty editor of magazine Anik, which has been organising a street play “Harmad” (bandit) says on the 35-minute drama, “It’s a take on the term ‘harmad’ which has been in vogue to refer the workers of a certain political party (read CPI-M). It’s about who are the actual harmads.”