Pleasant weather and expenditure were some of the reasons for which Mangalore was chosen to host the 17th edition of the National Youth Festival, said Principal Secretary (Youth Services and Sports) I.R. Perumal.
Mr. Perumal told The Hindu that the initiative to bring the festival to Karnataka was taken by former Youth Services and Sports Minister Gullihatti Shekar when the event was held for two years in Odisha.
Mr. Perumal said the former Minister took a team of 170 people to the 15th edition of the festival and sought to organise the festival in Karnataka. This was followed up by Karnataka officials at a meeting held in New Delhi a few weeks after the Minister's visit. It was in May 2011 that the Centre informed the State about hosting the 17th edition of the festival in Bangalore. Mr. Perumal said the Centre was giving Rs. 2 crore, which basically covered allowances paid to participants. They asked the State to spend additional of Rs. 2 crore and organise the festival. “But it's very difficult to organise the festival in Bangalore with such a small amount. Moreover there is heavy traffic in Bangalore,” he said.
The department then started looking for places that could host the mega event. “We did not want Mysore as it has been hosting Dasara. We did not want Belgaum as it had just hosted Vishwa Kannada Sammelan. We ruled out Dharwad because of weather. Hosting it in Gulbarga was also ruled out,” he said.
“Climate, finance, and other factors led to choosing Mangalore as the host,” Mr. Perumal said and added, “being the home district of the Chief Minister D.V. Sadananada Gowda, we were able to get additional funds from the State Government.”
Being connected through road, rail, and air, delegates found it easy to reach Mangalore.
“Over 6,000 delegates, officials, and journalists are taking part in this festival,” he said. The State Government has given Rs. 10 crore .
Keywords: National Youth Festival