Ravan put to flames by Mayor after CM's refusal

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Ranchi, Oct 9 (UNI) Amidst criticism over Chief Minister Shibu Soren's refusal to burn the demon king Ravan, the 55 feet effigy was set afire by state capital Mayor Rama Khalko at golden jubilee year of Punjabi Hindu Biradari, the main organiser of the event.

The 50-feet effigy of ''Kumbhkaran'' and 45-feet Meghnad, prepared by the artists of Kolkata were also burnt at the historic Morhabadi ground here.

The effigies were burnt by Ms Khalko after Mr Soren and Deputy Chief Minister Sudhir Mahto refused to oblige the organisers.

Union minister of State and local MP Subodhkant Sahai was also present on the occasion.

Mr Soren had turned down the request from the Punjabi Hindu Biradari saying he could not oblige them as the great king was not only a scholar par excellence but also his ''Kulguru''.

After lot of pursuation, Mr Mahto agreed and following which the organisers printed invitation card and started distributing with renewed vigour.

Barely three days left for the big occasion, Mr Mahto made a volte face saying he prefer to celebrate puja with his family in Jamshedpur giving a jolt to the organisers.

Since the creation of Jharkhand, respective chief ministers-Babulal Marandi, Arjun Munda and Madhu Koda have been traditionally burning the Demon king's effigy at the Morabadi Ground.

But the present Chief Minister broke the precedence leading to a fresh political controversy.

The organiseres were miffed at the last minute change of the Deputy Chief Minister's mind.

They said HRD minister Bandhu Tirkey of UGDP would grace the occasion as scheduled.

Mr Soren is the president of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha while Mr Mahto also belong to the same party.

The organisers spent about Rs 5 Lakhs for the entire function.

UNI XC-AM RH NY AS2109

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