Mysore/Mysuru: J.K. Grounds in the heart of the city and located very close to the City Railway Station, was a bee-hive of activity this morning as people from all parts of the city thronged the venue for purchase of flowers and other puja articles for the Gowri-Ganesha festival later this week.
In view of the spread of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, the MCC had ordered temporary shifting of Devaraja Flower Market to the spacious J.K. Grounds as a crowd control measure ahead of Gowri-Ganesha festival, for four days from today till Aug.22. Accordingly, more than 140 flower vendors, both wholesale and retail, had begun shifting to J.K. Grounds since yesterday morning itself. The vendors, anticipating rains during the four-day period, have erected large water-proof tents having a span of 15’x15’, under which 4 to 6 vendors have set up stalls, sharing between them the rent and cost of erection. While setting up the stalls, the vendors have ensured maintenance of physical distancing among themselves as directed by the authorities.
This morning, lorry loads of flowers from various parts of Tamil Nadu, Bengaluru, Hoskote and other places arrived at J.K. Grounds, with vendors anticipating good business as most people celebrate the festival using a variety of flowers. On the first day, Arabian Common Jasmine (Mallige) flower sold at Rs.300 per kg, Jasmine (Marle) at Rs.300 per kg, Tuber Rose (Sugandha Raja) at Rs.120 a kilo, Crossandra (Kanakambara) at Rs.1,200 a kilo, Star Jasmine (Kakada) at Rs.340 a kilo, Marigold (Chendu Hoovu) at Rs.50 a kg, Oleander (Ganagale Hoovu) at Rs.50 a metre, Chrysantheum (Sevanthige) at Rs.60 to Rs.100 a metre, Nerabul (Hybrid Tea Rose) at Rs.200 per kilo and Lotus at Rs.15 a piece.
Apart from flower vendors, there were vendors selling a variety of puja articles including Kumkum, Incense sticks, Camphor et al. Besides, a number of push cart vendors were seen selling fruits that are used most during the festival.
With people from all parts of the city and neighbourhood visiting the Flower Market at the new venue, the Police were on their toes, making repeated announcements on following COVID-19 measures, asking the public to compulsorily wear face masks and maintain physical distancing. The authorities had made adequate vehicle parking arrangements at the venue, with separate gates for entry and exit. The jurisdictional Devaraja Traffic Police were seen guiding motorists on parking of their vehicles, in order to ensure organised parking of two-wheelers and four-wheelers.
It may be recalled that this is the second time in the year that the Devaraja Flower Market has temporarily shifted to J.K. Grounds as a crowd control measure in the wake of COVID-19, with the first time being from July 29 to 31 on account of Varamahalakshmi festival.
KSRTC extends city bus facility to J.K. Grounds
With the Devaraja Flower Market getting temporarily shifted to J.K. Grounds, KSRTC has extended its city bus services to the venue from several areas for the benefit of the public. All city buses coming to the City Bus Stand from Kuvempunagar, BEML Nagar, Dattagalli and Bogadi side, have been directed to ply through J.K. Grounds on all the four days (Aug.19 to 22), according to KSRTC Mysuru City Divisional Controller Nagaraj.