Art of effigy making brings Muslim family from Rajasthan to Kanpur every year

Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh) [India], Oct 7 (ANI): The artists are giving final touches to the effigies at the parade ground here as the city is all geared up to celebrate Dussehra on Tuesday.

The riveting thing about the city's 140-year-old Ram Leela is the fact that the celebration of this moment of the Hindu festival depends on a Muslim family from Rajasthan, who has been preparing these effigies for the last 15 years.

Salim Khan, a resident of Rajasthan's Hindaun, said the art of effigy making is his ancestral work, which is an example of communal harmony and brotherhood in the country.

"I have been making the effigy of Meghnath, Kubhkaran, and Ravana for the last 15-16 years. We are a team of 15 people. There are around seven people from my family working here," Khan told ANI.

Salim, who is associated with a Ram Leela Committee, came to Kanpur along with 15 others a month before Dussehra, which is celebrated across India to mark the victory of Lord Rama over Ravana, the King of Lanka.

After the nine-day long Navaratri, the effigies of Ravana, Kumbhkaran, and Meghnad are burnt on the tenth day to commemorate the destruction of evil.

This year, Salim is preparing 80-metre tall effigy of Ravana. "We have been working on effigies for over 45 days," said Noor Alam, a relative of Salim Khan. (ANI)