The famous 10-day long Dasara festivities commenced in the palace city of Mysuru on Sunday, amid festive and religious fervor.
Celebrated as 'Nada Habba' (state festival), the festivities began with prominent writer S L Bhyrappa and Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa showering flowers on the idol of goddess Chamundeshwari, the presiding deity of Mysuru royals, atop Chamundi Hill.
In the Mysuru palace, the Navaratri celebrations kicked off with Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar, the scion of Mysuru royal family, dressed in grand attire, conducting Khasagi durbar (private durbar) by ascending the golden throne, amid chanting vedic hymns.
This was preceded and followed by traditional rituals.
His courtiers too were decked in traditional outfits.
Several literary and cultural events, along with exhibition, film show, flower show, food mela and sports activities have been organised by the state government as part of the 10-day-long festivities.
The royal palace and several parts of Mysuru city were illuminated with thousands of bulbs glowing all through the festival.
The celebrations culminate with the 'Jumbo Sawari' or procession of well decorated elephants carrying the idol of Goddess Chamundeshwari placed in a golden Howdah on Vijayadashmi or the 10th day of the festival, along with display of various tableaux and cultural groups.
Dasara was celebrated by the rulers of the Vijayanagar empire and the tradition was inherited by the Wadiyars.
Festivities were first started in Mysuru by the Wadiyar King, Raja Wadiyar I in the year 1610.
However, with the abolition of the institution of the kings and the announcement of privy purse, the state government took over the mantle of celebrating Dasara.
The state government had decided to release Rs 20.50 crore to organise the world famous Mysuru dasara festival between September 29 and October 8, at a high-level committee meeting on the preparations for the festival that had met under the chairmanship of Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa.
Meanwhile, the Mangaluru Dasara and Navaratri utsav was inaugurated at the Kudroli Gokarnanatheshwara temple here.
Dasara celebrations in the coastal city have earned fame over the years.
Various rituals and cultural programmes will be held at the temple as part of the celebrations.
For the first time in Mangaluru Dasara, the procession will be led by a truck carrying Sharada idol followed by other tableaus.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)