Dasara celebrations formally begin

Mysore Dasara celebrations formally began here on Saturday with Jnanpith recipient Chandrashekar Kambar lighting the traditional lamp and offering flowers to the idol of Goddess Chamundeshwari at the Chamundi Hills.

“Do not change the invaluable beliefs of the past in the garb of ushering in change,” Dr. Kambar cautioned, addressing a large gathering outside the Sri Chamundeshwari temple. Saying that changes in life were inevitable, Dr. Kambar added that positive elements must be retained for the betterment of all while embracing the new (changes).

Calling the process of globalisation ‘Golikarana’, which he said had led to ‘market culture’, Dr. Kambar said it had adversely affected rural lives and the bond between man and environment, and the aspect of togetherness among people in society. He regretted modern-day developments that vitiated the relationship between people and causing hatred, developments relating to accumulation of sophisticated weapons, pollution of the environment which threatens the very existence of mankind.

Surprisingly, Dr. Kambar said the ‘unstable’ State governments in the past had pushed the lives of the people into a rut and added the coming to power of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who hails from Mysore district, had given a new glitter to the festival. He praised the Wadiyars of Mysore, who had ushered in democracy by establishing the ‘Praja Pratinidhi Sabha’ under their rule and formulated pro-people programmes. The Dasara festival symbolises the victory of good over evil, Dr. Kambar said.

The credit of giving the festivities a stamp of Kannada should go to the Wadiyars of Mysore. It was heartening to note that the government of Karnataka was continuing the glorious tradition, and perpetuating a grand legacy even after the former rulers of Mysore relinquished power.

‘It’s a Nada Habba’

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, said in his speech, that Dasara was not just confined to Mysore but to the entire State and country. It was ‘Nada Habba’ in the true sense for the people of the State since all communities participate in it. Mysore city has a great potential to turn into an extremely popular tourist destination, he said.

He said he had instructed the Department of Tourism to prepare an action plan to promote tourism in Mysore and surrounding districts such as Chamarajanagar, Kodagu, Hassan and Mandya. He called upon the people to cooperate with the dispensation to make Dasara a success. He laid emphasis on maintaining peace and camaraderie.

District in-charge Minister V. Srinivas Prasad, who spoke earlier, said the State had reasons to be happy, thanks to copious rainfall this year resulting in the State reservoirs attaining full levels. This was 403rd Dasara festivities, a legacy of the Vijayanagar rulers, continued by the Wadiyars of Mysore.

Mayor N.M. Rajeshwari, president of the Mysore ZP, Mahadev, Chamundeshwari MLA G.T. Deve Gowda, who presided, Chamarajanagar MP R. Dhruvanarayan, Minister for Kannada and Culture Umashree, Minister for PWD H.C. Mahadevappa, Minister for Cooperation H.S. Mahadevaprasad, MLAs, Tanvir Sait and M.K. Somashekar, MLCs, C.H. Vijayashankar, G. Madhusoodan, Dharmasena, were present.

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