Description of Mughal Tamsha
It is conventionally staged in front of a temple of Lord Shiva in the locality, on the fortunate occasion of Maha Bishuv Sankranti involving the people of both Hindu & Muslim Communities. It satirizes Mirza, a Mughal administrator who exploited the local people. The play does not have a definite story. Mirza, the pivotal character, remains on stage right through. Each of the other characters i.e. Chopdar or guard, Zamindar, Vestiwala or water bearer, Hukawala or hookah bearer, Pankhawala or fan bearer, Bhat or panegyrist, Daptari or clerk, Bhandari or storekeeper, and Guwalon or milkmaid has only one scene in which to sing and act. The Chopdar summons them one by one as desired by Mirza, and they introduce themselves through mostly farcical songs. Each couplet is repeated by a chorus. After the performance they ask for baksheesh from Mirza and, while leaving the stage, ask the chorus leader, 'What is happening here?' He replies, 'The festival of Siva is being celebrated,' then sings in praise of Siva and exits. The play is customarily performed in the precincts of a Siva temple.
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