The Annual Bonalu festival kick-started at the historic Golconda fort in the Old City on Sunday with the State government offering traditional silk clothes to the Goddess Mahankali there.
Endowment Minister A Indrakaran Reddy, Animal Husbandry Minister Talasani Srinivas Yadav and Excise Minister T Padma Rao Goud participated in the ritual and paid obeisance at Matha Jagadamba Mahankali temple. The ministers attended the special pujas conducted on the occasion and sought blessings of the goddess to shower more rains and help people develop. The State festival of Bonalu festival is a reflection of its age-old culture and tradition.
A grand procession from Lal Darwaja in the old city was taken out with a large number of devotees with traditional Thottellu, artists in multiple attires and Potharajus dancing to the tunes of drums and women clad to mark the festive occasion were cynosure on the occasion. Indrakaran Reddy said the Bonalu festival was being celebrated in the city and the State for many decades. It is first of its kind in the world and a large number of people throng the deity to offer pujas and seek blessings for progress, he said.
Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao has offered Rs 15 crore for the Bonalu Festival this year as against Rs 10 crore spent last year, Indrakaran Reddy said. Ever since the government offered State festival status, the Bonalu was being celebrated in a grand manner earlier, he said. The government has made elaborate arrangements for the Bonalu festival to be conducted in a smooth manner. Srinivas Yadav said they have deployed adequate police personnel for the peaceful conduct of the event.