Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath will witness this year a star-studded Ramlila at Lakshman Qila in Ayodhya, which will be telecast live in 14 languages, including Urdu, across the country.
He will be one of the few in the audience for this year's Ramlila as general spectators will not be allowed to watch the show physically due to the COVID-19 restrictions.
The nine-day enactment of the life of Lord Ram as per the epic Ramayana will be a virtual affair this year.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, Ramlila will be performed without spectators but will be telecast live on social media platforms and YouTube between October 17 and 25.
"Yogi ji has accepted our invitation and he may visit Ayodhya on any day of the Ramlila to watch it," said director Subhash Mallik of Delhi Ramlila Committee, which has been allowed by the Uttar Pradesh government to stage the show this year in Ayodhya.
Malik said he met the UP chief minister along with Ramlila committee president and Bharatiya Janata Party MP Pravesh Varma to invite him to the show and he consented to it.
Describing Varma as the driving force behind the event, Malik said the Yogi government also okayed the telecast of the event in 14 languages, including Urdu, during Dusshera celebrations.
"It will be a historic moment when Ramlila will be broadcast in Urdu and the star cast will also include Muslim actors like Raza Murad and Shahbaz Khan," said Malik.
Talking of various stars enacting Ramlila this year in Ayodhya, Malik said BJP MP from North-East Delhi Manoj Tiwari will play the role of Angad, Gorakhpur MP and Bhojpuri actor Ravi Kishan will be Bharat and Vindu Dara Singh will re-enact his television role of Lord Hanuman.
Actor Raza Murad will portray Ahiravan and actor Shahbaz Khan will bring alive Ravan on stage while Asrani will appear as Narad Muni and Rakesh Bedi will play Vibhishan.
"We got the administration's nod for performing at Ayodhya and we will strictly follow the COVID-19 protocols," he said.
"A mammoth LED screen will be installed above a grand stage which will mirror the epic ambience of Ramayana. We'll focus on state-of-the-art light and sound arrangements so that dialogues are clear during seamless translation and broadcast," Malik added.
"A special attraction of the event will be a programme on 'Ramrajya' or places where the Lord's feet fell and a 30-minute programme on Ayodhya's history," said Malik.
The Ramlilawill be held with the cooperation of the tourism and cultural department of the Uttar Pradesh government.