Kerala Government will organise the Onam Week celebrations on a grand scale from August 27 to September 2, Minister for Public Works and Tourism PA Mohamed Riyas announced today.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will inaugurate the state-level celebrations at Nishagandhi open air auditorium in the state capital on August 27 at 6 pm. Noted danseuse Mallika Sarabhai and actor Fahadh Faasil will be the chief guests at the function. This was jointly announced by Riyas and General Education Minister V Sivankutty at a press conference here.
The brochure of Onam celebrations was unveiled on the occasion in the presence of Sivankutty, who is the chief organiser of the event.
The inaugural ceremony will be followed by Panchavadyam performance by students of Peringode School, Pattambi and dance performance by artistes of Kerala Kalamandalam.
The week-long celebrations will conclude with a colourful pageantry from Vellayambalam to the East Fort in the city on September 2. Governor Arif Mohammed Khan will flag off the Onam procession at Manaveeyam Veedhi.
Riyas said the government was this time introducing the harvest festival with ‘Onam Symphony of Harmony’ as the theme, showcasing the secularism of Keralites before the world. “Tourism Clubs in various countries will disseminate the concept of Onam widely,” he added.
Riyas said Onam celebrations will follow green protocols and a special green army will be formed for the purpose.
Around 8,000 artistes, including of the indigenous genres, will present various art forms in 30 venues in the state capital alone. The Department of Tourism will do illumination this year at Kanakakunnu Palace, where a laser show will also be conducted.
Like every year, illumination will be done from Kowdiar to Manacaud in the city and it will be extended to Sasthamangalam area also.
The Minister said apart from various programmes, trade and food festivals will be held in various parts of city. Media organisations have been allotted Central Stadium near Statue and Police Ground at Thycaud for conducting programmes.
Noting that Onam is a major cultural event with tremendous scope to attract tourists to the state, Shri Riyas informed that special seating arrangements will be there for tourists and new projects will be conceived for bringing more tourists during Onam in future. Tourism club members will be deployed as volunteers for the smooth conduct of the celebrations, he added.
Sivankutty said security will be intensified this year and VIP pavilion to watch Onam pageantry will be put up at Fine Arts College. Special children will have separate seating arrangements to watch the pageantry.
Present at today’s press meet were Onam Programme Committee Chairman I.B. Satheesh, MLA; Public Works Department and Tourism Secretary K. Biju and Tourism Director P B Nooh, who is also the Convenor of the Onam Programme Committee.