To highlight the need for encouraging creative arts, the Amir Jan Art Academy organised a contest and held a two-day exhibition of paintings at the Town Hall here.

Parents accompanied by schoolchildren arrived in large numbers to get a glimpse of the prize-winning paintings, which included those created by noted painters from different parts of the country.

Speaking on the occasion, Amir Jan said that in these days of electronic gadgets and television invasion, there was a great need to nurture creative skills among the people. Only such efforts can help develop the overall personality of children.

Aged people who face a variety of problems in day-to-day life can find some respite through painting.

Following a call from the organisers, the school managements also sent their students on a visit to the paintings exhibition. The prize-winning paintings at the recent national level contest were featured at the expo.

The exhibits included a painting by Rajahmundry-based artist Y. Subba Rao, who got the first prize. Venkat Rao of Tanuku stood third and Konda Srinivasa Rao of Hyderabad was fourth.

Artists T. Mrutyanjaya Rao, P. Penchalaiah and Eeduru Sudhakar were members of the jury. Dr. Sudhakar said that the present generation had immense talent and they needed encouragement at every available forum.

About 64 painters took part in the contest and the best paintings were featured in the expo.

Amir Jan Art Academy honorary president Amaravathi Krishna Reddy announced the list of best paintings. In his message delivered on the occasion, he said that they were giving all necessary support to the artists in their endeavour to protect creative arts such as painting.