Technology has outgrown us in many aspects. In the age of large speakers, DJs and a festival dominated by cheesy film songs, the dhol pathaks of the city have chosen to adhere to tradition.
Rajmudra Pathak have made it very clear that no electronic sounds will be used by their troupe. “Technology is suppose to make our lives easier and it is great that people have speakers, DJs and music for their procession. But the tradition, which is passed on to us from our fathers and grandfathers, needs to be given the respect it deserves. Those who want to use it can use it, but we have the inherited tradition that we want to continue,” says Prasad Pardeshi, of Rajmudra.
Sunil Shivale of Ramanbaug Prashala, said, “We have been lucky to be the pathak that plays for Kasba Ganpati, which is one of the five maanache Ganpati of Pune. This is a matter of pride for us and we have the privilege because our school was chosen to do so. When you receive something through tradition, you have to nurture it in a traditional manner.”
Renukaswaroop is an all-girl pathak which has been actively participating in processions throughout the city for the past five years. Because the pathak is administered by the school itself, the parents and the students have assurance of their safety.
“The whole idea is to provide the girls with an opportunity to participate and channelise their energy in a positive manner. The girls play dhol, tasha, zaanz and also perform the traditional mardani games too,” said Savita Kajrekar, principal of the school.
Kajrekar added, “We have utmost regard to our principles and tradition. We do not endorse speakers, or hire a DJ. Infact we don’t even allow gulaal in our processions.