Uthradam Tirunal Marthanda Varma, head of the royal family of erstwhile Travancore, has said that Swathi Tirunal's reign was a period of transition.

His reputation as a patron of cultural activities attracted musicians, actors and dancers from all parts of India to his court, he said after inaugurating ‘Swathi Vandanam’, a programme to celebrate the composer-king’s 200 birth anniversary in the city on Friday.

Cultural Affairs Minister K.C. Joseph, who was the chief guest, said the government had decided to confer the prestigious ‘Swathi Puraskaram’ on renowned musician V. Dakshinamoorthy to make up for his not being considered for a Padma award so far.

Palode Ravi, MLA, ‘Surya’ Krishnamoorthy, chairman, Kerala Sangeetha Nataka Akademi, and Kumara Kerala Varma, former principal, Swathi Tirunal College of Music, paid homage to the former ruler of Travancore.

A 12-hour long music concert from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. will be held at the Naatakasala of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple on April 28 as part of the festival, which would conclude with the recital of ‘Bhavayami Reghuramam’, a Swathi composition, by 200 students of music on the same day.