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Star of Mysore exclusive Dasara-2023 interview | Want to make Dasara a revenue-generating event: DC

By Shadan Muneer

Nada Habba Dasara is just 10 days away and Mysuru city transforms into a fairyland during this season. The District officials are tasked with enhancing and making the festival visually appealing year after year and this year is no exception.

Star of Mysore Special Correspondent Shadan Muneer caught up with Mysuru Deputy Commissioner (DC) Dr. K.V. Rajendra, who is also the Dasara Special Officer, to learn more about the plans and arrangements for the ensuing Dasara. —Ed

Star of Mysore (SOM): The most awaited time of the year for Mysureans is here. How are the preparations coming along for the cultural extravaganza?

Dr. K.V. Rajendra: Indeed, October brings the festival spirit to Mysuru and preparations are in full swing. We have formed 17 Sub-Committees to ensure that we maintain the traditional glory. High-Powered Committee meetings have already been held to outline the preparations. We also need to address drought-related concerns while ensuring that preparations are underway to preserve the age-old glory and legacy.

SOM: Can you tell us about the special highlights this year?

Dr. Rajendra: This year, we are focusing on making Dasara more natural and environment-friendly. We aim to bring more discipline to the cultural events, introduce visual mapping of traditional buildings and emphasise women’s empowerment.

We are also exploring ways to make it a revenue-generating event without burdening the general public. Given the drought situation, we are scaling down some grand celebrations and we are taking guidance from the Chief Minister and the District Minister to balance our efforts in handling drought while upholding our cultural traditions and celebrating Dasara with pomp and grandeur.

SOM: Mysuru is a hub of cultural talent. What plans have you made to encourage local talents?

Dr. Rajendra: All the Sub-Committees have already been publicised and public participation has been invited in various competitions. Mysureans are blessed with abundant talent and we encourage them to come forward and showcase their skills. We have created various platforms for people of all ages to exhibit their talent.

SOM: Mysureans share a strong sense of ownership of Dasara. How do you involve the local public in the preparations?

Dr. Rajendra: Mysuru and Dasara are inseparable and public participation is integral because they take pride in it. We have included non-official local representatives in some of our committees and involved them at multiple levels. Over the past year, I have interacted with people from all walks of life, including public representatives, the general public and the media. We have taken their feedback, both positive and negative, into account. Even in informal sessions, we gather their comments and suggestions.

SOM: Mysuru Dasara is renowned nationwide and worldwide. What steps are being taken to promote it digitally for people outside the State to attend and witness the celebrations?

Dr. Rajendra: We are planning to brand Dasara at airports and have approached the Airports Authority of India to include it in their advertisement boards. We are using hashtags and have hired website designers for festival marketing. We aim to generate interest on different social media platforms.

SOM: How do you plan to promote the festival on an international platform? You had proposed gold cards exclusively for foreign tourists. Is that being implemented?

Dr. Rajendra: Promoting Dasara to attract foreign tourists requires careful handling. We need to ensure certainty, proper advertising, ticket availability and other arrangements. We are marking specific places for international tourists and collaborating with online ticket vendors to reach international forums. Discussions are underway regarding branding at international airports. Regarding gold cards for foreign tourists, we are actively discussing the matter and will take a decision soon.

SOM: Neighbouring States’ tourists flock to witness Dasara. However, the outbreak of the Nipah virus in Kerala has raised concerns. What measures are being taken to ensure that Dasara is not affected by the virus?

Dr. Rajendra: The Nipah virus is a zoonotic virus that can transmit from infected bats or animals to humans. It spreads through close contact with bodily fluids like saliva or droplets. Kerala is on high alert and we have requested people coming from affected areas to Karnataka to check for symptoms and alert the authorities. We are closely monitoring the situation and will follow the guidelines.

The post Star of Mysore exclusive Dasara-2023 interview | Want to make Dasara a revenue-generating event: DC appeared first on Star of Mysore.

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