Mysore: The City of Palaces is all set for the inauguration of the 404th edition of Nada Habba Dasara on Thursday.
Jnanapith awardee Girish Karnad will launch the Navaratri festivities atop Chamundi Hills, in keeping with the tradition, during Tula Lagna between 8.37 am and 9.05 am.
It is also the maiden Dasara after the demise of the scion of the royal family Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar in December last.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, Revenue and district in-charge Minister V Sreenivas Prasad, PWD Minister Dr H C Mahadevappa, Cooperation Minister H S Mahadeva Prasad and Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister T B Jayachandra will be present during the inaugural ceremony.
Following the launch, the city will unveil a melange of attractions, making the place a must-visit till jamboo savari, the grand finale the 10-day festivities on October 4.
Illumination of prominent buildings and junctions, exclusive cuisines at the food mela, cultural programmes, plays, the Dasara exhibition, separate exhibitions for farmers, women and children and much more are on offer.
For the first time, a replica of Amba Vilas Palace made of LED bulbs has come up at Ramaswamy Circle. Similarly, for the benefit of tourists, tourist passports have been re-introduced, offering one-ticket entry to various spots like the Palace, zoo and Chamundi Hills.
The events include cultural programmes at different venues like the Palace, Kalamandira, Ganabharathi, Jaganmohan Palace, Town Hall and Chikka Gadiyaara. The film festival — with screening of movies at different theatres and screens – is another attraction.
The film fest will be formally opened at Kalamandira at 11 am. Films will be screened at Lakshmi, Thibbadevi and Olympia theatres, DRC Cinema and Satyam Cineplex (both multiplexes), Senate Hall of the University of Mysore, the KSOU auditorium and the Rani Bahadur Auditorium, along with one theatre each in the seven taluks of Mysore district.
The Dasara adventure sports will be inaugurated at the Varuna Lake on Mysore-T Narsipur road at 11.15 am, Arogya Dasara at Mysore City Corporation at 11.30 am, Food Mela at Scouts and Guides Grounds at 12 noon and wrestling tournament at Devaraja Urs Multi-Purpose Stadium at 3 pm. The sports meet will be opened at Chamundi Vihar stadium at 4 pm.
The other attractions are Flower Show at the new venue, Kuppanna Park near Hardinge Circle. It will be inaugurated by Horticulture Minister Shamanur Shivashankarappa at 4.30 pm. Another major attraction — Dasara Exhibition at Doddakere Maidan — will be opened by Tourism Minister R V Deshpande. Women and Child Development Minister Umashree will inaugurate Book Mela at CADA grounds at 5 pm.
Yuva Dasara, the crowd-puller event, will be inaugurated on September 27 at 6.30 pm at Maharaja’s Grounds by actor Puneeth Rajkumar. Poets’ meet will begin from September 29. The police have turned the city into a virtual fortress, with the deployment of close to 8,000 personnel, the highest in recent years. Men are also drawn from the rapid action force, commando wing of the internal security division, KSRP, CAR and DAR.
CM arrives in Mysore
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and his Cabinet colleagues arrived in the city on the Golden Chariot train, on Wednesday. The train was specially operated to facilitate the chief minister and his ministers to take part in Navaratri festivities scheduled to start on Thursday. The train departed Bangalore at 5 pm and reached Mysore at 7.35 pm.