Union Minister for Environment Jairam Ramesh will inaugurate this year's Mahatma Gandhi boat race in the Pampa at Mannar on September 13.

Addressing a press conference here on Saturday, N.Shylaj, programme committee general convener, said Chief Minister Oommen Chandy would present the Mahatma trophy to the winners.

Mr. Shylaj said as many as 40 boats, including 12 snake-boats, would take part in the boat race and mass drill in the Pampa. He said preparations had been made for the smooth conduct of the annual boat race.

Prof P.J. Kurien, Congress chief whip in Rajya Sabha; Anto Antony, Kodikunnil Suresh, MPs; Mathew T.Thomas, P.C. Vishnunath, MLAs; Babu George, district panchayat president; and leaders of political parties would address the inaugural function.