Isha Sahni, Gurgaon: Gone are the days when groups of children pooled money to buy…
Peeyush Khandelwal, Ghaziabad: The multi-coloured effigies of Ravan, Kumbhkaran and Meghnad are being
erected at various Ramlila grounds in the city for the Dussehra festival on Tuesday. Artisans and craftsmen have spent nearly a month to make the effigies which will be set afire on the festival.
Mohammed Dilshad, who is from Gulaothi, is busy erecting an 80-feet-tall effigy of Ravan at the Kavi Nagar Ramlila Ground. He has been making effigies for the past 30 years. “We have been staying at the Ramlila ground to prepare the three effigies for the past one month. We are on good terms with the committee members. This time, the Ravan effigy will be 80 feet tall while the Kumbhkaran will be of 75 feet feet tall. The effigy of Meghnad will be of 70 feet,” he said.
Dilshad says the effigy-making business has changed drastically over the years. He says the customers now demand more colourful and taller effigies. “Three decades back, when I started the work, the effigies were around 30-40 feet and no one asked for fancy decorations. Now, the faces have to be carefully painted and even other parts like hands, legs and crown need more details. We have put up LED lights worth nearly Rs 30,000 to make the faces of the effigies look stunning at night,” he added. Nearly Rs 10,000 worth of LED lights were also put up at the ‘Lanka’ effigy which was set to flames to signify the burning of ‘Lanka’ by lord Hanuman on Sunday.
This year, Dilshad’s son Adil has also joined him in making the effigies. Adil, who has cleared class 12, says he does not mind the work. “I am learning the art from my father like he did from his father and grandfather. This is a good time to display our craftsmanship.