Delhi During Dussehra

by admin on October 16, 2012

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Vijay DashmiAs the days keep getting shorter, you know that winter’s coming round. Along with it, comes the Sharad Navratni, starting the 16th of this month; to appropriate blessings, by worshipping Ma Durga and her various forms (powers) called Shakti. On the tenth day, Dusshera is celebrated all over India under various names, like Viajaya Dasami, Dashara, Navratri, Durgtsav, and so on. Derived from Sanskrit ‘dasha’ meaning ten and ‘hara’ meaning removal- it could symbolize the removal of Lord Ravana’s ten heads by Lord Rama- viz triumph of good over evil. This year, according to the Hindu lunar calendar, day 3 and day 4 falls on the same date; October 18, so it will culminate with Dusshera on October 24.

If you are here during the capital, Ram Lila is best seen at the RamLila Grounds which is reachable by Metro rail by getting off at Chadni Chowk and taking an Auto from there, it usually costs about a maximum of Rs.50. Most of celebrations occur near the Red Fort area and the Delhi Gate.

Strange as it may seem, up north in the capital city of Delhi, the 9 day RamLila festivities were actually started by Mughal king Bahadur Shah Zafar, around 180 years ago, near Delhi. Today, many dances and theatrics based on Lord Rama’s life are played around the Ramlila Ground just about 18 km from the New Delhi Railway station, culminating in the burning of the ten headed Lord Ravana; amidst the crackling of fireworks, depicting the final triumph of good over evil. The most famous and oldest organizers of the festivities is organized by Ramlila Lila Committee with a parade of costumed performers who throng the by lanes of old Delhi like Chandni Chowk, Nai Sarak, and finally through Asaf Ali Road and into Ramlila Grounds, starting their traditional plays about Ramayana. Amongst others, Shree Dharmic Leela Committee organizes its own form of Ramlila, wherein parts the lesser known episodes of the Ramayana are exhibited every year. However, it is organized in Subhas Maidan area of the Red Fort and is known more for the ethnic street food stalls. The Lav Kush Ram Lila Committee is also in the Red Fort Area. Deriving the name from the sons of Rama, Luv and Kush and this one is more famous for its high tech illumination.

Last year, many schools thought up ways to have pollution free Dussehera, so many schools did make an effort, and instead of burning the effigy of Ravana with crackers, noise and smoke, they simply turned the figure or face of Ravana by 1800 this, is indeed a noble thought as it also sensitizes almost everyone at a young age about the ‘evils’ of pollution.

Most educated or maybe ‘metronised’ or ‘globalized’ people are not seen during these festivities at the Ramlila grounds due to lack of parking space and the immense pollution, so maybe if most burnings are reduced, we may see some more people enjoying the Dusshera celebrations.

Even if you are not so much into religion, your spouse and children might revel in the epic of Ramayana retold in dramatic fashion and the final climax of burning of Ravana. And since the temperature starts to fall during that time, it won’t be so sweaty and grimy, but a pleasant autumn, you may enjoy the streets of Delhi at your own leisurely pace savoring the street food, sights, sounds and Heritage sites starting from the Old Fort area and go back south on the metro to visit the Qutab Minar. If you suddenly have divine insights, you can always go across the river Yamuna which also has a Metro stoppage to the famed Akshardham temple. As the festive season has just begun, next time we will give you an insight about Diwali in Delhi.

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Delhi During Dussehra, 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating
  • neethu

    jai ram
    jai durga ma
    its not my words its all the words of the great people of india celebrating dussehra

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