As the palanquin bearing Goddess Hadimba reached the towns historic Dhalpur maidan,thousands of people – devotees and tourists alike,witnessed a colourful beginning to the seven-day Kullu Dussehra on Thursday.
Deity Hadima is considered the grandmother of the Kullu royal family and the processions arrival marks the beginning of the festival. The tradition of celebrating Dussehra in Kullu dates back to the reign of Raja Jagat Singh (1637 to 1672).
Chief Justice of Himachal Pradesh High Court Kurian Joseph ,Supreme Court judge Justice Panikaran Radhakrishnan and Allahabad High Court judge Justice Satish Chandra were present at Kullu to be part of the festival.
Though most of the ceremonies for the festival remain almost same as per tradition,few new things were introduced to make it more graceful. Due care has been taken for stay of the deities and persons ,who escort them,said Deputy Commissioner,Kullu B M Nanta.
With the state banning disposal plastic plates,cups and glasses,efforts are on to make the festival more environment friendly this year. The district administration had announced its plan to make Kullu Dussehra free of polythene. Kullu will enforce the ban on smoking and use of polythene strictly and send a message to the state and the country about states commitment to environmental protection, Kullu SP Abhishek Dular said.
Meanwhile,security has been beefed up with the deployment of riot control force,bomb disposal squads and sniffer dogs. Closed circuit cameras have also been put to use . Elsewhere in the state,Dussehra was celebrated with greater fervour . With Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal being away from Jakhu,Horticulture Minister Narinder Bragta presided over the main function at the famous Jakhu temple as thousands of the people reached the town.