Dasara 2023: Traditional but expensive at Rs. 29.25 crore
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Dasara 2023: Traditional but expensive at Rs. 29.25 crore

December 3, 2023

2022 celebrations cost Rs. 28.74 crore; no wasteful expenditure, says DC

Mysore/Mysuru: The Mysuru District Administration has spent Rs. 29.25 crore for the Dasara Festival 2023, surpassing the expenditure of the 2022 celebrations.

Despite the State Government’s announcement that this year’s Dasara would not be extravagant, Deputy Commissioner (DC) Dr. K.V. Rajendra, who is also the Dasara Special Officer, disclosed the expenses incurred by the Dasara Executive Committee and said that the expenditure crossed the last year’s mark mainly due to rising costs, though there was no wasteful expenditure.

Last year’s expenditure was Rs. 28.74 crore, and this year it stands at Rs. 29.25 crore. The total expenditure for organising events in 2023 amounted to Rs. 27,05,22,049. Additionally, Rs. 1 crore has been spent for celebrations in Mandya (Srirangapatna), Rs. 1 crore for Chamarajanagar and Rs. 20 lakh for Hassan, taking the total to Rs. 29,25,22,049. This reflects a substantial increase from the 2022 expenditure of Rs. 28,74,49,058, indicating an increase of Rs. 50,72,991 this time.

Dr. Rajendra detailed the allocation breakdown, including Rs. 15 crore from the Department of Kannada and Culture, Rs. 10 crore from the Mysuru Urban Development Authority (MUDA), Rs. 2,25,70,000 from sponsors, and Rs. 1,19,95,000 from ticket and Gold Card sales. The royalty generated from the Aahara Mela amounted to Rs. 81 lakh. The total approved budget of Rs. 29,26,65,000 surpasses last year’s figure of Rs. 26.09 crore.

Committee-wise allocation

Reception, invitation, venue and transportation protocol: Rs. 3,22,56,688; Procession: Rs. 2.45 crore; Torchlight Parade: Rs. 1.24 crore; Tableaux: Rs. 25 lakh; Raitha Dasara: Rs. 30 lakh; Cultural Programmes: Rs. 2 crore; Fine Arts: Rs. 20 lakh; Kavigoshti: Rs. 35 lakh; Yoga Dasara: Rs. 15 lakh; Yuva Sambhrama: Rs. 2 crore; Yuva Dasara: Rs. 5.88 crore; Women and Children Dasara: Rs. 35 lakh; Dasara Film Festival: Rs. 45 lakh; Dasara Wrestling: Rs. 45 lakh and Elephant Maintenance: Rs. 1,60,56,781.

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Other expenditures include Rs. 10 lakh for programmes at Rangayana, civil and electrical works at Rs. 1,44,01,879 by MUDA, Rs. 1,35,55,000 by the Public Works Department, Rs. 1,74,29,701 by Nirmiti Kendra and Rs. 1,51,22,000 by the Mysuru City Corporation (MCC), contributing to the total budget of Rs. 27,05,22,049.

The Mysore Palace Board allocated Rs. 5 crore for events in the Palace premises, with details of this expenditure provided separately. Additionally,  Rs. 50 lakh was paid to the Wadiyar family as royalty, including Rs. 47.5 lakh as an honorarium and Rs. 2.5 lakh as GST.

More for youth events

Significant funds were allocated for youth events, with Rs. 2 crore spent on Yuva Sambhrama and Rs. 5.88 crore for Yuva Dasara. The Yuva Dasara, which usually spans seven days, was shortened to four days this time. Despite restrictions on the platform and reduced stage space, the budget has increased compared to the previous year.

The DC responded to this by stating that prominent artistes participated in this year’s Yuva Dasara and the decision to shorten the event was made by the High-level Committee responsible for organising the event. He clarified that a minimum of three high-voltage programmes were organised each day.

Dr. Rajendra said that the State Government had earmarked approximately Rs. 40 crore for a simple and traditional Dasara this year. If any irregularities are found in the expenditure, corrective action will be taken based on the Committee of Auditors’ examination.

The DC justified the marginally higher expenditure, considering general price increases and asserted that the amount spent for Dasara was within limits. Despite budgetary constraints, Dasara was celebrated successfully with a huge turnout of people who witnessed the event, unlike ever before, he added.

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All put together it is Rs. 40 crore

Approximately Rs. 6 crore was spent on Dasara illumination by Chamundeshwari Electricity Supply Corporation (CESC), according to information provided by the DC. However, the detailed breakdown of this expense is not included in the information shared by the District Administration. Responding to queries on this matter, Dr. Rajendra clarified that historically, expenses for Dasara illumination have been accounted for separately.

Last year’s expenses for Dasara Sports amounted to Rs. 22,02,975, Rs. 29,08,759 for cleanliness and arrangements, Rs. 7,40,699 for the Publicity Committee and Rs. 18,50,000 for Dasara Darshana. “However, this time, the expenditure for all these aspects is zero,” the DC added. All these expenses have been covered by the respective Departments without utilising the Government grant. Additionally, the Palace Board’s separate allocation of Rs. 5 crore and the illumination expenses of Rs. 6 crore together contribute to Rs. 12 crore, thus bringing the total Dasara expenditure to Rs. 40 crore.

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