The Corona virus has caused an outcry around the world, people are being sensitized through various media to prevent the spread of this disease. In such time, the Bhavai community of Undera village near Vadodara are using social media to best of their use to spread awarenesses in people.
Jayanti Chavda, a well-known comedian of Gujarati films and keeping Bhavai’s tradition alive with public awareness said, people are upset over the lockdown due to Corona virus and there is a lack of knowledge about the disease in people. Years ago, Bhavai was the best way to go from village to village to provide information of government schemes. And now in the time of lockdown they are using the same medium to reach people.
He further said that due to the current lockdown, it is not possible to go to villages and cities to raise awareness about the corona virus. So he wrote a Bhavai based on protection from Corona where the Ranglo and Vidushak performed it online on phone and giving information about Corona. Kshitij Supekar, who plays Rangla and Vidushak Jayanti Chawda with their dialogues are creating awareness in people on phone and taking the help of social media. They are also providing entertainment to the people.
Jayanti Chavda said, amidst the changing lifestyle and the growing interest towards Western culture, it has become difficult to preserve the glorious heritage of Bhavai. At that time, Bhavai artists from Vadodara have introduced Bhavai online in the period of lockdown. This centuries old tradition is now on the verge of extinction in the city. Now the time has come for the number of Bhavai Mandals to be counted at the fingertips. However, in many areas, artists are struggling to preserve the legacy of the forgotten art.
Despite the grandeur of Bhavai, the new generation is far away from it and engaged in Ras-Garba, Dandiyaras, held with a modern sound system. If it is not encouraged than the centuries-old tradition will be past. No tickets or money are kept to see Bhavai, but even then they don’t get any audience. But they hope, the way Ayurvedic medicines have taken place in Corona virus, in the same way, the forgotten Bhavai will prove to be the best stage show to re-entertain and bring awareness in people.