Dasara begins in K'taka

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Mysore, Sep 30 (UNI) The world famous 10-day Dasara festivities began in this historic city today with lighting of a lamp and special puja to Goddess Chamundeswari, the main deity, atop the Chamundi Hills.

Sri Shivakumaraswamiji of Siddaganga Mutt in Tumkur, who offered pooja to the Goddess, declared open the festival in front of the temple by lighting the lamp.

Offering puja on the occasion, Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa announced Rs 100 crore for the development of the city to boost tourism.

From next year, the 'Nada Habba' would be conducted at the taluk and hobli level, he said.

Referring to the wrong publicity by some people and anti-socials on the festivities, Mr Yeddyurappa warned of severe action against them.

He also instructed the district administration to give top priority to security during the festivities following increase in terrorism and bomb blasts across the country.

In his address, Sri Shivakumaraswamiji said the Dasara festival symbolised the unity and diversity of the State and the country.

Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar, the scion of the Mysore Royal Family, performed a puja inside the palace premises earlier in the day.

He would also observe religious chores as laid down by the texts and ascend the priceless golden throne on the occasion.

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