VARANASI, INDIA, September 16, 2021 (Hindustan Times): The well-known and historic Ramlila of Ramnagar will not be staged in Varanasi this year for the second consecutive time after the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country in March 2020. The royal family of Kashi, the organiser of the Ramlila, decided to postpone the 200- year-old event keeping in mind the fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic. Kunwar Anant Narayan Singh of the royal family of Kashi informed Commissioner of Police, Varanasi, A Satish Ganesh about the decision of the family through a letter.

Traditionally, the Ramlila begins on Anant Chaturdashi in Ramnagar every year. It is staged for one month annually. It is held under the open sky every evening till midnight. Lanterns are lit up for the people to enjoy the festivities. The Ramlila is staged in the backdrop of the Ramnagar fort under the autumn sky. Traditional lamps are the only source of light, which lends an ethereal feeling to the natural surroundings. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) has also recognised the event as an intangible world cultural heritage. In a total span of 238 years, this is the second occasion when the Ramlila has been cancelled.