Gone are the days when Ramlilas would entertain with an act on an open stage, portraying the tale of Ram with an abundance of glitz. Organisers now are taking up live issues — foreign-direct investment (FDI), inflated electricity and water bills, corruption and the fight against diabetes etc — as part of Navratri festivities.
The Ramlila Maha Sangh of Delhi has organised a 10-day awareness campaign on diabetes at 1,100 venues in the run-up to Dussehra. Through posters, banners and frequent public announcements, the organisation aims to spread awareness among devotees and the festive crowd.
“The blue lights across our venue have been placed intentionally. The effigy of Ravan will also be blue. We spend lakhs and crores of rupees on Ramlila festivities and it’s time that some part of it is spent in having a better tomorrow. The government can’t do everything,” Mahender Nagpal, the general secretary of the Ramlila Maha Sangh, said.
Shree Ramlila Committee, IP Extension, known for its unorthodox Ramlila celebrations, is gearing up to burn a fourth effigy.
“We have identified four issues -- FDI, electricity charges, water bills and corruption -- and visitors to the venue are being asked to vote on which one is the most pressing. The one that wins the poll will be burnt along with the effigies of Ravan, Kumbhkaran and Meghnath,” one of the organizers, Jeeweesh Sharma, said.