Disability fails to deter these two Ramleela artistes

Through sign language, Prateek and Mohit share that Ramleela has changed their life for good

lucknow Updated: Sep 10, 2017 13:49 IST
Smriti Malaviya
Smriti Malaviya
Hindustan Times, Allahabad
Ramleela,Shree Patharchatti Ramleela Committee,differently-abled artistes
Artistes Mohit Shukla and Prateek Srivastava (Anil Kumar Maurya/HT)

Shree Patharchatti Ramleela Committee in Uttar Pradesh’s Allahabad has been offering roles to differently-abled artistes for many years now. The committee completes 180 year of its inception this year.

Among nearly 125 artistes, technicians and support staff who are working round-the-clock for the grand Ramleela starting September 21, there are two confident youngsters Prateek Srivastava and Mohit Shukla who can be found rehearsing their roles as lead dancers. By watching their moves and face expressions, one can hardly believe that both of them are differently-abled. But it has hardly affected their ability to perform with perfection.

The duo give all credit for bagging roles to ‘Lord Ram’ (played by Sunny Gupta), organisers like Lallu Lal Gupta ‘Saurabh’, Rajiv Gupta and director Ashwani Agarwal. It will be the fifth year when Prateek, hailing from Karbala, will be performing as one of the lead dancers in the Ramleela.

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“Prateek is my friend. Once I brought him to see the rehearsals. He got so inspired that he also decided to become a part of it. He is so intelligent that by just watching the traditional moves of choreographer, he copies them exactly while other artistes take several days to master them. So, we never faced any trouble in making him dance. He has hundred per cent hearing impairment. Yet, he doesn’t miss even a single beat,” says Sunny Gupta.

Prateek also introduced his friend Mohit to Ramleela and despite having speech and hearing disability he became a part of it three years ago.

“Both of them are very sharp. You just explain them in sign language and they will do it exactly,” says director Ashwani Agarwal. “They are very disciplined artistes,” shares Lallu Lal Gupta. Through their sign language, Prateek and Mohit shared that the Ramleela had changed their life for good.

First Published: Sep 10, 2017 13:49 IST