Krishna Pushkaralu begins in Andhra, Naidu flags off festival in Vijayawada
The Krishna Pushkaralu in Andhra was off to an official start in the early hours of Friday morning after chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu flagged off the celebrations in Vijayawada.
'Krishna Pushkaralu' is a festival of River Krishna which is usually held once in 12 years. The event is observed for a period of 12 days from the time of entry of Jupiter into Virgo.
This year, the festival, which attracts lakhs of devotees from all over Andhra Pradesh and other states, will be held between August 12 to 24 in Krishna, Guntur and Kurnool districts.
Naidu in a statement said:
We request pilgrims to ensure that they be aware of the routes to travel to ghats in AP. Pilgrims are requested to move to ghats with less crowd and ensure that they are safe and cooperate with the security personnel. Please follow the traffic restrictions and follow rules. Do not park vehicles in unauthorised spaces. We request you to cooperate with the traffic police personnel.
He also added that children and senior citizens can be accompanied by volunteers if informed.
However, certain reports suggest that the state was still not fully ready for the festival.
The New Indian Express reported:
Works at Punnami, Bhavani and Sangamam ghats are still moving on a slow pace. Krishnaveni Ghat developed at a width of 750 metre in the downstream of Prakasam Barrage, is the only bathing ghat in the city where 100 per cent works have been completed.
The report also added that Naidu took a serious view of the progress and asked officials to complete all pending works by Thursday night.
Despite the state facing a severe cash crunch, the TDP government has already earmarked Rs 1080 crore for the festival.
The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has been roped in to ensure smooth progress at all bathing ghats during the festival.