Ramlila runs in the blood of these Chandigarh-based stage artistes
Three generations of Bagga family have been playing roles in Chandigarh’s Sector-17 Ramlila since 1950spunjab Updated: Oct 13, 2018 15:18 IST
Tall and upright, bow in hand and arrows in quiver, Lord Ram, the epitome of a man of principles or ‘maryada purushotam’, has been an intrinsic part of their lives, playing the role generation after generation in Ramlilas (stage shows of the epic Ramayana) in the city.
Three generations of Bagga family have been playing roles in Chandigarh’s Sector-17 Ramlila since 1950s. Ajay Bagga played Ram’s role for 25 years, from 1981 to 2005. Before Ajay, his father late Sohan Lal Bagga did the role of Ram from 1961 to 1980. Now, Ajay’s nephew Gaurav Bagga, will play the role Lord Ram for the sixth time this year.
Bagga family was felicitated by the Limca Book of Records for playing Ram over three generations. Ajay is a tailor by profession, a business started by his father. “I was chosen to play Ram because of my brown eyes, but my father was more handsome ,” he admits shyly.” His son works as a data entry operator with the Haryana government .
The Sector 20 Azad Dramatic Club was set up by Kuldeep Raj Sharma, who played the role of Laxman. An ex-armyman, Kuldeep, 91, says he is still very active on the sets in the capacity of the president of the club. His grandson, Munish is the vice-president, and acted as Lord Ram as a child from 2001 to 2005 before he aligned himself with the organising side of the committee. His father, who expired some time back, played the role of Ravan from 1970 to 1984.
Sunil Sharma, is famous for his portrayal as Ravan not just in the Ramlila but also during blood donation camps, cycling drives and other campaigns. This time, he will play Dashrath , while his son Saurabh Sharma will act as Laxman. “Right now he is young but I’m getting him ready to play the role of Ravan someday,” he says.
Sohan Singh Gosain, a retired employee of the Haryana Bijli Board, is the president of the Sector 28 Garhwal Ramlila Mandal. The Ramlila was started by his father Bachan Singh Gosain in 1968.
He started with the role of Laxman in 1975 and then switched to Ram. His elder brother Mohan Singh Gosain also participated in Ramlilas in Patiala before he got into the Indian Army.
First Published: Oct 13, 2018 15:13 IST