Manjappa Hosamane, Vice-Chancellor, Vijayanagar Sri Krishnadevaraya University, has said that people have the responsibility of nurturing and encouraging the country’s rich culture and traditions, including folk arts like leather puppetry, besides passing them on to posterity.

“It is a matter of regret that the rich culture and traditions of the country, including folk arts, are appreciated by foreigners while they are being neglected in our country and our youth is getting attracted to western culture,” he said after inaugurating the two-day Janapada Sambhrama organised by Sri Ramanjaneya Togalugombe Mela Trust, Bellary, in association with the Department of Kannada and Culture on Sunday.

Prof. Hosmane underlined the need for various cultural and social organisations, along with the State government, to initiate steps to protect and nurture the folk arts like leather puppetry, ‘bayalata’ and ‘sutrada gombe’, among others, which were on the verge of extinction.

S.A. Krishnaiah, folk research scholar, who spoke on the leather puppetry art in Karnataka and abroad, said that the State government should establish an academy exclusively for leather puppetry art.

Gundurao of Rajaram Togalugombe Mela, Hassan, and Prakash Garuda of Puppet House, Dharwad, complimented Nadoja Belgal Veeranna, a renowned shadow leather puppetry practitioner, for his contribution to popularising the art in India and abroad.

Prabhu Swami of Virakta Math, Sandur; Henry D’Souza, Bishop of Bellary Diocese; and Brahmakumari Nirmala spoke on the occasion.

Chornur Kotrappa, Assistant Director of Kannada and Culture, and M.G. Goud, architect, were among the guests.

Later, several artistes and achievers in other fields were felicitated.

  • Concern over youth getting attracted

    to western culture

  • Demand to set up academy for leather puppetry art