MYSURU : As public had no access to watch the direct the jumbo savari (elephant procession) directly, thousands watched the procession live streamed on State-owned tv news channel and also on social networking page of Information department on Monday after the prevailing emergency situation on account of Covid-19 restricted the procession from its usual march of about 6-km to just about half a kilometer march within Mysore Palace premises. The guest invitees were toned down to 300 to the venue.
On several occasions, the State Government had conducted the Mysore Dasara festivities on a low-key affair in times of emergency in the past and this year owing to Covid-19 spread in Mysuru city testing about 500 positive case each day, it was decided to hold the procession within the confines of Mysore Palace to keep away mass gathering on roads on jumbo savari day.
In normal years, the 10-day Mysore Dasara festivities used to be held on a grand note in multiple locations across the city such as yuva dasara, food mela among a host of cultural events while the jumbo savari was the main crowd puller drawing lakhs on to the roads to watch caparisoned elephants march from Mysore Palace premises to Bannimantapa, the culmination point of the procession. However, illumination of city roads was the lone attraction during this Dasara.
On jumbo savari day, entry of people to Mysore Palace was restricted by the police and as a precautionary measure, police had sealed the roads leading to Mysore Palace with barricades and made some of the thoroughfares of the city a no entry zone.
Chief Minister B.S. Yadiyurappa showered flowers petals on Goddess Chamundeshwari idol carried on golden howdah weighing about 750-kg on the back of royal elephant Abhimanyu to start the procession. Tamed elephants Kaveri and Vijaya marched along with Abhimanyu.
Prior to showering petals, Mr Yadiyurappa performed nandi dwaja puja in front of Palace premises and said that “It was inevitable for the State Government o hold Dasara festivities on a low-key on account of Covid-19 and flood damages and if everything goes right, the next Dasara festivities would be a grand occasion.”
A tableau from department on health and family welfare featured on the procession creating awareness on wearing face masks to stop spread Covid-19.