BRS leader and MLC K. Kavitha has demanded that the Central government accord national festival status to the historic Sammakka Saralamma Jatara (tribal fair) celebrated at Medaram in Mulugu district, once in two years.
Stating that the bi-annual jatara draws millions of people from far and wide, she said, “National festival status to the mega tribal fair has been a long-standing demand.”
Speaking to the media after offering prayers at the historic Ramappa temple at Palampet village in Mulugu district on Sunday, she said that the centuries-old biennial tribal jatara was held four times since the formation of Telangana in 2014.
The State government had spent more than ₹100 crore on each event ensuring improved amenities to pilgrims and successful conduct of the festival, she noted.
Built in 1213 AD by Recharla Rudrudu, dating back to the Kakatiya era, the Ramappa temple is the only temple in India to be named after its sculptor and bears testimony to architectural and sculptural brilliance. After around 1,000 years, the temple attained global fame owing to the collective efforts of all including the Telangana government and the Ramappa Parirakshana Samithi, she said, adding that the State government constituted Ramappa Development Authority to develop the areas surrounding the temple including the roads and public amenities.
In 1914, Ghulam Yazdani, an official of the Nizam’s Archaeology Department, carried out some repairs at the edifice thereby conserving the monument for posterity.
Stating that Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao accorded high priority to the development of Mulugu district, she said that the government has already sanctioned a medical college to the tribal majority district and constructed Sammakka barrage at a cost of ₹1,800 crore to augment irrigation facilities.
She also said that the Chief Minister sanctioned ₹137 crore for construction of ‘karakattas’ (flood banks) to prevent flooding of areas along the Godavari river banks. Tribal Welfare Minister Satyavathi Rathod and others accompanied her.
Earlier, Ms. Kavitha inaugurated the office building of the Telangana Boggu Gani Karmika Sangham (TBGKS) at Bhupalpally, the district headquarters town of Jayashankar Bhupalpally.
Commotion prevailed outside the office when BRS cadres owing allegiance to two different groups raised slogans against each other due to simmering group rivalry, sources said. The police intervened and dispersed them.