When it comes to burning Evil, albeit symbolically, price-rise has little effect. Effigies worth over Rs. 70 lakh would go up in flames on Sunday as the tricity celebrates Dussehra.
At least three effigies each would be burnt at 34 places in Chandigarh, and the cost of one can go up to Rs. 2.25 lakh as some have plans to burn a fourth effigy of social evils too.
The key venues in Chandigarh are at Sectors 17, 22, 24, 27, 29 and 46. In SAS Nagar, the main celebration would be at four places, while Panchkula's prominent venues are three.
Despite the escalating prices, most Dussehra committees ordered effigies of Ravan that would be 70-82 feet high, though Kumbhakaran and Meghnad have got lower billing.
"We have the tallest Ravan this year, at 82 feet. Meghnad and Kumbhakaran will be 74 feet. The cost of organising Dussehra has gone up by 20%, but this cannot dampen the spirit of celebrating Lord Ram's victory. Our cost would be Rs. 3-4 lakh," said former councillor Jatinder Bhatia, chief patron of the Shri Sanatan Dharam Dussehra Committee that would organise the Sector-46 celebrations.
"Indeed the budget has gone up by 20%. But the glory cannot be diminished because of that," said Ravi Sehgal of the Sector-17 committee.
"The cost of the chemicals to prepare the crackers that are put into the effigies has gone up by 15% as compared to last year. We are spending about Rs. 45,000 this year on crackers. Ravan, this year, would stand at 70 feet. But since we have a fourth effigy of social evils, the budget would go to `3 lakh," said Madhu Bhushan from the SAS Nagar Dussehra committee.