Acting and devotion meet politics in this year’s Ramilia as lawmakers play support cast

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New Delhi | Published: October 18, 2018 5:22:53 PM

Delhi's iconic Luv Kush Ramlila, one of the oldest in the capital, roped in politicians and celebrities to play various roles in the 10-day long traditional event.

Ramlila, Dussehra, Navratri, Luv Kush ramlila, Narendra Modi, Dr harsh Vardhan, Red Fort, Chandni Chowk, Vijender Gupta, Manoj TiwariThe Luv Kush Ramlila, one of the oldest in the city, roped in politicians to be part of the 10-day affair. While the role of Raja Janak, Sita’s father, was played by Union Minister and Chandni Chowk MP Harsh Vardhan, Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari played the role of Angad.

It rarely happens that Raja Janak becomes the centre of attraction in a Ramlila but this year at the Red Fort, audience was only focused on him. The reason for this attention was the ‘actor’ who played Raja Janak. Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Minister in PM Narendra Modi’s cabinet and MP from Chandni Chowk, donned the look of Sita’s father.

It wasn’t just him, people were seen murmuring as soon as Angad appeared on stage or Rishi Atri walked in. Delhi’s iconic Luv Kush Ramlila, one of the oldest in the capital, roped in politicians and celebrities to play various roles in the 10-day long traditional event. Apart from Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Delhi BJP president and famous Bhojpuri actor/singer Manoj Tiwari played the role of Angad. Leader of Opposition in Delhi assembly Vijender Gupta played the role of Rishi Atri and BJP MP from Punjab’s Hoshiarpur Vijay Sampla played goddess Parvati’s father Himavat.

Though, this is not the first time that celebs have marked their presence in Ramlila’s cast. But it was certainly a first of its kind for politicians to join in. Manoj Tiwari who represents North East Delhi in the Parliament has previously played Kewat.

A spokesperson of Luv Kush Ramlila said that they had contacted politicians few months ago and many agreed. “It was planned that Chandni Chowk MLA Alka Lamba would play the role of Ahilya but it did not go as per plan. Others, like Chandni Chowk Councillor Ravinder Kumar and RJD MLA Sanjay Yadav have also participated this year. We try to reach out to big names from various fields. But participation of politicians adds another dimension to it as people get to see their leaders in a different avatar,” he told Indian Express.

“Since politicians are busy with many engagements, they can devote only few hours to the Ramlila and that is why they have been given roles where they can manage things easily,” Indian Express quoted the spokesperson as saying.

Delhi BJP leader Vijender Gupta said, “I used to play different characters in Ramlila during my college and school days, but this was my first act on a stage since then. Coincidentally, many of my BJP colleagues have participated as well. I had a great time here. As an elected representative, people expect you to only be seen in a certain role. Occasions and celebrations like these help us connect more with people. They get to see that we are also like them, one of them.”

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