Bangalore: Mysore has been celebrating Dussehra for over 400 years now. This festival is of such hype in the city that Mysore plans its calendar around it. Itís a ten day festival, which is celebrated to hail the Goddess Chamundeshwari who slayed the fiend Mahishasura and so she is also called Mahishasura mardini. The festival celebrates the triumph over evil which concludes on the tenth day of Vijayadashami.
During the ten days of celebration the state government arranges folk dance performances, folk music, flower and doll shows and also features wrestling. The exhibition during Mysore Dussehra is there for two months and more. It was started in 1880 by the then king of Mysore Chamaraja Wodeyar, the tenth still dominates the festival scene. Held in the Doddakere Maidan opposite the palace, itís flooded with all kinds of utility items, souvenirs or gifts and food, also has games and other fun activities. The exhibition is eco friendly with no plastic rule.The Dussehra procession takes place on Vijayadashami which is held on the streets of Mysore. It commences with the royal couple worshipping the idol of the Goddess. After which the idol is placed on the golden stage called a mantap which is carried on the royal elephant called the ĎJamboí savari by the locals. The procession has music band, dancers, adorned horses and camels. It also has people from different state participating in cultural wear and performing dances or songs.
The festival has the grand finale in Bannimantap after the banni tree is worshiped with the torch light parade held in the ground. There are fireworks, daredevil stunts on motorbikes by the Indian army team and not to forget the Laser show which is also included.
Mysore continues to keep its old vintage charm all through these years; it is the city rich in tradition, culture and heritage. The taste of the old Southern Indian culture can be felt just by visiting the city and by the sight of it architectural splendors like the Places, avenues, bungalows, shops. The temples, especially the Chamundi temple on the hill top reminds the cities sovereign past.
Mysore has maintained its culture and is only growing strong by keeping it on top notch. The grand celebration of Dussehra is what Mysore takes pride in and always delivers its best. And when anyone talks about Dussehra, Mysore Dussehra always calls special attention.