Bengaluru, DHNS: Cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar is among the six eminent personalities whose names have been shortlisted by the state government to inaugurate Dasara festivities on October 1.
Addressing the media after chairing a high-power committee meeting, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said the panel had suggested a few names, including that of Tendulkar, poets Channaveera Kanavi and K S Nissar Ahmed, freedom fighter H S Doreswamy, writer S L Bhyrappa, and Suttur Mutt seer Shivarathri Deshikendra Swami, to inaugurate the festivities.
The name would be finalised by the Dasara Working Committee on August 9. The festivities will be inaugurated at Chamundi Hills at 11.40 am.
The chief minister said this year the celebrations will be held for 11 days. Usually, Ayudha Puja is celebrated on the ninth day, while Vijayadashami is celebrated on the tenth day. This year, however, as per the almanac, Vijayadashami has fallen on the 11th day, so Jamboo Savari and Torchlight Parade will be held on October 11, Siddaramaiah said.
“This has happened earlier too. Last year, both Ayudha puja and Vijayadashami fell on the same day,” he added.
Last year, Dasara celebrations was a low-key affair owing to the acute drought in the state. “This year, as the rains have picked up pace, the government has decided not to observe any austerity measures. But this doesn’t mean that it will be a very grand affair. The festivities will be held as per the tradition,” the chief minister said.
Siddaramaiah said he has directed Chief Secretary Arvind Jadhav to ensure that all departments, including Kannada and culture, tourism, forest, industries, RD&PR, energy, water resources, agriculture and PWD, to mandatorily open stalls at the Dasara Exhibition Grounds on the day of the inauguration.
During the meeting, the chief minister also directed the tourism department to hire special flights (small carriers) for the convenience of tourists.
Tourism Minister Priyank Kharge told DH?that the department would be floating a request for proposal in a day or two, and also hold discussions with private airlines.
The tourism minister said special flights would be introduced to Mysuru from Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune and Mumbai.
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