Bellary MP Ugrappa told TNM that the BJP protests over the earlier decision to cancel the event had no role to play in it.

Ktaka govt now likely to hold Hampi Utsav week after declaring it would be cancelled
news Politics Monday, December 03, 2018 - 10:52

Reacting to pressure by the opposition BJP, the Karnataka government is likely to observe Hampi Utsav next month after a u-turn of sorts. Less than a week ago, the government through Water Resources Minister DK Shivakumar had announced that due to widespread drought conditions in the state, the annual Hampi Utsav would be cancelled. It was earlier reported how BJP, especially its Ballari unit, had made it a political issue citing the state government was selective about its austerity measures. They questioned why the government went ahead with observing the controversial Tipu Jayanti celebrations across all districts, calling it “pseudo secular”.

“For this govt, a fanatic and Persian language imposer is pride of Karnataka. But celebrating golden era of Vijayanagar kingdom is burden,” the state BJP had said in a tweet.

Read: ‘Why was Tipu Jayanti celebrated?’ BJP upset after K’taka govt cancels Hampi Utsav

However, since Sunday, there has been a change in signal from the Congress. VS Ugrappa, who recently became the MP from Bellary seat from the mining heartland defeating BJP’s Sriramulu’s sister and a former MP, told TNM, “Every MLA of the area and me being the MP of the area, we have demanded to the CM and district-in-charge minister that the festival be conducted. There is a positive response from them and I am confident that the government will organise the festival. The government understands that this is the Swabhiman programme of the area and going by the pulse of the people, the government will hold the Utsav.”

He claimed that the BJP protests had no role in the change in stance. “The BJP is trying to politicise each and every issue, when they were in power in 2013, why did they cancel the event then?” he added. He argued that the initial decision by the government was keeping in mind the existing drought situation of not only the region but the entire state.

Hampi is a tourist hotspot located in Ballari district and home to ruins of the erstwhile Vijayanagar Empire. It hosts a three-day festival usually held in the first week of November, which is organised by the state government. The festivities include cultural events, music shows, puppet shows, dance performances by artists from the state and elsewhere, apart from other recreational activities.


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