Krishna Pushkarams commence in T, AP
The Krishna Pushkarams commenced early Friday morning, with chief ministers of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh taking a holy dip and offering their prayers at the river. While there was expected religious fervour along the primary bathing ghats in the two states on the first day of the event, there was also some drama.
Despite the build-up to the mammoth event in both states, fewer pilgrims than expected trickled in as many decided to stay back home to perform Varalakshmi Vratam, it being the first Friday of Sravanamasam.The pilgrim rush is expected to pick up in the coming days.
While Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, accompanied by his wife Shobha Rao and other family members, kicked off the Pushkarams by taking a dip in the river at Alampur in Mahbubnagar district; in Vijayawada, chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu took a dip along with the Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham pontiff Jayendra Saraswati.
While speaking about the Pushkarams, KCR said it was only after the formation of a separate state that Telangana could conduct the mega event -hitherto centred around Vijayawada and Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh -in a manner that distinguished the state.He also spoke about his government’s plans to develop the Sri Jogulamba Devi temple in Alampur. For his part, Naidu told reporters that despite being ridiculed, he had proved that interlinking of Krishna and Godavari rivers was possible, a feat that was achieved in just one year in Andhra Pradesh. He then unveiled plans to interlink all rivers in the state in a phased manner.
He also elaborated on challenges being faced in building the new capital city of Amaravati.
The Pushkarams began at the moment when, according to astrologers, Bruhaspati (planet Jupiter) entered the Kanya raasi (Virgo constellation). Keeping with the spirit of the festi val, the research wing of AP’s information and publicity department sought to relate mythological tales in a bid to show why the Krishna was a holier river than the Ganga.
However, raking up controversy was actor-politician Nandamuri Balakrishna. The spirit of the event appeared to have been lost on him as he drove up the hill to the Kanaka Durga temple in Vijayawada in a private vehicle. A ban had been put in place on private vehicles to ensure safety of pilgrims in light of the expected rush.
Flouting rules further, the actor also decided not to pay the Rs 500 required for darshan ticket. While Balakrishna was taking advantage of his VIP status, another VIP, opposition leader in Andhra Pradesh and YSR Congress president Jaganmohan Reddy , was smarting from not being extended an official invitation to the Pushkarams’ inaugural at Vijayawada despite holding the rank of a cabinet minister.
eenadu news paper 13-08-2016: http://epaper.eenadu.net