Home / News / India /  This Maharashtra village offers prayers to demon king Ravan on Dussehra

Dussehra is celebrated by burning the effigy of Ravana to mark the victory of good over evil. In the Treta Yuga, Lord Ram killed Ravana who had ten heads, because the demon king had abducted his wife Sita. However, Ravana was a great devotee of Lord Shiva who is believed to have incredible power.

Residents in a non-descript Maharashtra village believe that they are employed and able to sustain their livelihood because of Ravan's blessings and the peace and happiness in their village are because of the demon king, according to the news agency PTI.

Hence, the residents of Sangola village in Akola district celebrate Dussehra by performing the 'aarti' of Ravan, despite burning his effigies like others. Locals claim the tradition of worshipping Ravan for his "intelligence and ascetic qualities" has been going on in the village for the last 300 years.

At the center of the village stands a tall black stone statue of the 10-headed demon king. The villagers believe in Lord Ram, but they also have faith in Ravan and do not burn his effigies, local resident Bhivaji Dhakre told PTI on the occasion of Dussehra on Wednesday.

Visitors from across the country come to this small village on Dussehra every year to catch a glimpse of the Lanka king's statue and some even offer prayers, locals said.

Subodh Hatole, a Sangola resident said, "With the blessings of Mahatma Ravan, today many people in the village are employed. On the day of Dussehra, we worship the statue of Ravan with a maha-aarti."

Some of the villagers also hail Ravan as a "scholar" and believe he abducted Sita for "political reasons and preserved her sanctity", Dhakre told PTI. 

Local temple priest Haribhau Lakhade said while the rest of the country burns effigies of Ravana on Dussehra, symbolizing the victory of good over evil, residents of Sangola worship the demon king for his "intelligence and ascetic qualities".

Lakhade said his family has since long been worshipping Ravan and claimed the happiness, peace, and contentment in the village is because of the Lanka king.


(With PTI inputs)







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