Madurai

Alagiri launches digital ‘Sound and Light’ show

Union Minister M K Alagiri inauguration the 'Light and Sound' Show in Madurai on Saturday. Photo: G. Moorthy.  

The tourism circuit in southern districts of Tamil Nadu got a fillip on Saturday with the launching of newly-digitised ‘sound and light’ show at the grand Tirumalai Naik Palace here.

M.K. Alagiri, Union Minister for Fertilizers and Chemicals, inaugurated the show besides declaring open a sculpture yard and releasing handbooks on it and the palace, popularly known as ‘Mahal.’

Addressing the inaugural function, the Union Minister said that establishing a similar sound and light show at the Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple was also being contemplated.

“I have already spoken to the Chairman, Board of Trustees of the temple, Karumuttu T. Kannan, in this regard. I will also take up this matter with K.R. Periakaruppan, the State Minister for Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments department,” he said.

Apart from these two major tourist locations, he said that major development works have been taken up at Alagarkoil in the district and upon completion, it would also become a tourism hotspot.

Appealing to the public not to indulge in vandalism, Mr. Alagiri said that he considered this Mahal to be even more beautiful than the Taj Mahal at Agra. “People’s cooperation is very vital to preserve such an important monument,” he opined.

Increasing tourists

Speaking earlier, N. Suresh Rajan, Tourism Minister, said that tourists flow to Tamil Nadu had been increasing at 22 per cent every year.

The Mahal alone saw more than 3.74 lakh domestic tourists and 30,000 foreign tourists in 2008. The State as a whole had more than 62 lakh domestic tourists and 2.56 lakh foreign tourists in 2008, he said.

Thangam Thennarasu, Minister for School Education and Archaeology Department, under whose control the Mahal is, said that only a quarter of the original palace built by King Tirumalai Naick survives till date. “It is our solemn responsibility to protect and preserve what remains,” he said.

A. Tamilarasi, Minister for Adi Dravidar Welfare, said that many development projects had been initiated to boost tourism in Madurai region.

T. S. Sridhar, Principal Secretary and Commissioner, Department of Archaeology, said that the Mahal, which was built during 1636 AD, was designed by an Italian architect. Declared as a national monument in 1971, the sound and light show was started in 1981. It fetched revenues to the tune of Rs. 36 lakh annually, he said.

N. Nanmaran, Madurai (East) MLA, K.S.K. Rajendran, Madurai (West) MLA, N. Mathivanan, District Collector, G. Thenmozhi, Mayor, also spoke.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2021 3:55:52 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/Alagiri-launches-digital-lsquoSound-and-Lightrsquo-show/article16881120.ece

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