Karnataka celebrated the 63rd year of its formation on Thursday with the state government organising a celebration at the Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru.
Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy along with his cabinet and others took part in the celebrations.
He unveiled the yellow and red state flag even as the Karnataka anthem penned by eminent Kannada poet Kuvempu was played in the stadium. "Unity in diversity is our culture. As Kuvempu described, Karnataka is a peaceful garden of all religions. Let Kannada prevail in our words, thoughts, and actions. Let us build a prosperous Karnataka," Kumaraswamy said.
Thousands of school students took part in the celebrations organised by the state government. The students from across the state showcased various cultural programmes.
A colourful procession was accompanied by folk performances including drama, traditional dance (Dollu Kunitha, Veergase, Kolata) and classical carnatic music.
The Formation Day was also celebrated at all district headquarters. Deputy Chief Minister G. Parameshwara took part in the celebrations in Tumakuru.
On November 1, 1956, Kannada-speaking areas of the erstwhile Bombay and Madras presidencies, along with an old Hyderabad region merged with old Mysore to form the new southern state.
Originally formed as Mysore State, it was renamed Karnataka in 1973 during the tenure of Chief Minister Devaraj Urs.
The celebrations this year are limited due to the upcoming bye-elections in five constituencies in the state. The model code of conduct is in place in Shivamogga, Ballari, Mandya, Jamkhandi, and Ramanagara, which will go to polls in 48 hours.
The Election Commission noted that speeches given on the day should remain apolitical.
The poll code also meant that the Rajyotsava awards which are usually given out on this day will only be announced after the first week of November. Achievements from many fields are honoured with the awards.
Karnataka Chief Secretary TN Vijay Bhaskar suggested that the awards be given away except to the recipients belonging to the districts where the poll code is in place. However, CM Kumaraswamy rejected the suggestion and decided to postpone the announcement of the awards.
With IANS inputs