Once Nawabsahib ka juloos, Lordsahab ka juloos has a man playing angrez as its centerpiece who is then roughed up by revellers
By Shiv Gopal Tiwari, APN
Shahjahanpur town in Uttar Pradesh marks Holi in a unique way. The colourful festival is celebrated by taking out ‘Lordsahab ka juloos’, variously known as Joota Maar Holi.
Here, one person must volunteer to be the Angrez, who symbolises British colonial rule in India, and be thrashed with shoes and broomsticks while the procession advances through the city.
Participants of the procession, mostly youth, wear brightly-coloured clothes and sprinkle each other with gulal and coloured water throughout the journey. They also hurl footwear at the Angrez, riding a buffalo cart that is the centerpiece of the procession.
The man playing Angrez is administered a liberal measure of alcohol; and those standing by him are entrusted with the job of protecting him from serious injuries should the crowd go out of control.
The traditional celebration is also given best protection by the police force. Earlier, this procession was known as ‘Nawabsahib ka juloos’. However, Muslims expressed unwillingness to go along with this form of celebration.
Participants claim that this procession is an opportunity to express our feelings against British rulers who committed all kind of atrocities on Indians.
The Angrez is selected every year and paid well for his performance. A poor and unemployed person generally offers his services for playing the villainous character.