Hello friends! How has the month of September treated you, pretty cool, I suppose. My only complaint is why time has been flying so quickly. I still remember that it was just recently I welcomed the New Year and another year seems to be fast approaching. Nowadays I have started feeling that 24 hours a day is not sufficient for me to accomplish all my routine stuffs. Will anyone come forward and lend me their time? Ha ha, I doubt it! Moving towards the end of September, I decided to write something on the Festival of Dasara that is celebrated at a grand scale at Mysore. After having been born and brought up here, it becomes my duty to write something at least about the beautiful city of Mysore. In the due course of writing this article I’m sure that I will fall short of words in explaining what a beauty it is for tourists to visit Mysore during the Dasara Festivities. But yet, I will give it a try.
My friends know for sure that I keep asking them for suggestions regarding my blog articles. This suggestion to write about the festivities of Dasara comes from my friend Akshatha. Thanks Akshatha for giving me the topic as in the due course of my research on the same, I’ve learnt a lot of things I wasn’t aware so far. Without wasting much space on other things I’ll just rush to begin on what I have for you in this post.
We all know that Dasara (or Dussehra or Navarathri as it is termed at different regions) is celebrated all over India towards the end of September or beginning of October with great devotion. Each region has its own way of celebration. I’m not much aware of how the festivities are carried through in other parts of our country, but, I’m well awrae of how the festivities happen at my own place, that’s MYSORE! Dasara is the Mysore Royal Festival – celebrated on a grand scale as the State Festival of Karnataka. It’s popularly known as the NADAHABBA. It is a ten-day festival, the last day being the Vijayadashami Day– which marks the victory of truth over evil (the day which marks the victory of Goddess Chamundeshwari over Mahishasura, the demon). It has been said that the Dasara celebrations were started by thenVijayanagara Dynasty. After the downfall of the dynasty, the festivities have been taken over by the Wodeyars of Mysore (the Royal Family of Mysore). The festivities are given a start with the Wodeyar Couple worshipping Goddess Chamundeshwari in the Chamundi Temple on the CHAMUNDI HILL at Mysore. The royal durbar is held at the palace premises. This royal durbar has been a part of the celebrations since long. Even to this day, the royal durbar is held. Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wodeyar, the current scion of the Royal Family holds a private durbar, where family members and other special invitees are present.
The next attraction to the festivities is the Lighting. It is a tradition that is being followed since long, that the Mysore Palace is bejeweled like a princess during these festivities. It is a sight which most of the tourists look forward to with eagerness is the lighting of the palace during these ten- days or so (why only tourists, even we, the residents of Mysore look forward to it with a lot of enthusiasm). The palace is usually lit with a lot of incandescent lights fortwo hours every day for eight days and for three hours during the later days. I just happened to read somewhere that about 97,000 incandescent lights are used for illumination. Wow, I mean being in this city, I wasn’t aware of it! It’s like a shocker. It is such a tough job to have such illuminations done. About 1 Crore every year is spent towards the same is what I heard. It’s really a treat to the eyes to watch something so pleasant. I really wonder why people go wandering in search of beauty to different places when our very own city is a living example of beauty at its best! Apart from the Mysore Palace, all the main roads leading to the Palace and other places of Dasara Celebrations are illuminated with colorful lights.
Moving on….. Its Yuva Dasara time as well! People look forward to it with same enthu of the dasara festivities. It’s the time when maestros visit the city and fill it with loads of fun, frolic and entertainment. I read recently that Deepika Padukone may form a part of the inauguration of the Yuva Dasara; also Sunidhi Chauhan is supposed to be a part of the fest. Mysore is getting ready to rock. The celebration of Yuva Dasara makes Mysore Dasara a complete package – tradition mixed with enjoyment.
The most important of all being the Dasara Exhibition, how can one not mention about the same! Dasara exhibition is an integral part of our Dasara Celebrations which opens with the Dasara Festivities but goes on for about two months beyond Dasara. I still remember that going to this place during my childhood used be a lot of fun. This is the place where I’ve been on the roller coaster things and stuffs like that for the first time. I still cherish those lovely moments. The presence of numerous stalls out there at the Exhibition Grounds attracts majority of the crowd.
The Processionon the Vijayadashami Day followed by the Torch Light Parade at Bannimantap marks the end of Dasara Celebrations. But, I will make a separate post for that as I have a bit too much to write about the same.
The Dasara festivities this year are to begin from the 5th of October and are to go on up to 14th October. There is a lot to look forward to in the coming days for all of us. So let’s make the festivities a great success.
I will be back again with a post in continuation of the same. Till then, have fun.