Kerala to host Tourism ministers meet on sidelines of Onam celebrations

The 1,200 owners in four apartment complexes near the backwaters of Kochi have been opposing the move to demolish the flats.

Kerala Tourism’s week-long cultural extravaganza to mark this years Onam celebrations will kick off on September 10, showcasing the states vibrant classical and folk dances, modern art and performing traditions.

As part of the Onam celebrations, the capital city, Thiruvanathapuram, will also host the State Tourism Ministers Conclave, to be inaugurated by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan
on September 16, the concluding day of the festival.

Union Minister of State for Tourism and Culture Prahlad Singh Patel will be the chief guest at the meet to  held at nearby beach resort Kovalam, stateTourism Minister Kadakampally Surendran told a press meet here on Friday (September 6).

Besides deliberating on key topics like sustainable tourism, challenges faced by the industry, and branding and promotion of State Tourism Boards, the amazing story of Kerala’s post-flood resurgence will be presented before the entire country at the conclave, he said.

Also read: Kerala govt announces Onam freebies to flood hit

Last year, Onam Week Celebrations were cancelled as the state was overwhelmed by the devastating floods which had claimed over 400 lives.

“No calamity is going to dampen our spirit to survive and forge ahead. This year also, there had been heavy downpour, spawning devastation and loss of lives. But we will survive adversities and move forward. This is the message of the Onam celebrations,” the minister added.

The Chief Minister will inaugurate the celebrations at Nishagandhi Auditorium in the heart of the city on September 10 evening.

State Assembly Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan will deliver the Onam message and leader of the Opposition Ramesh Chennithala the keynote address.

Surendran said ₹6 crore has been earmarked for the conduct of the festival. Of this, ₹4 crore would be for events in and around the state capital and ₹2 crore for the other districts.

Also read: In rain-hit Kerala, Onam bonus adds to KSRTC’s revenue woes

National award-winning actor Keerthy Suresh and popular star Tovino Thomas will be the chief guests on the inaugural evening, whose highlight will be a musical performance by iconic playback singer K S Chitra and team.

The festival will feature over 5,000 artistes of different genres. There will be performances of dance, music, percussion ensembles, plays, yoga display, literary competitions and recitals besides staging of diverse folk, martial and contemporary arts.

The state capital alone will have programmes in as many as 29 venues. The festival will conclude with a colourful cultural pageantry here depicting the history and culture of Kerala on September 16 at 5 PM.

The tourism minister also launched a promotional video of the ongoing Champions Boat League (CBL) at the press meet. Top-notch composer A R Rahman has done the background score for the video, made by Bharat Bala.

Surendran also released the logo of Chaliyar River Paddle 2019, a 68 km expedition along the Chaliyar river from Nilambur to Beypore, organised by Jellyfish Association with
the support of Kerala Adventure Tourism Promotion Society from September 20-22.

C Divakaran, MLA, working chairman Onam celebrations committee, Tourism Director, P Bala Kiran and KTDC MD, Rahul R were also present at the press conference.

Also read: Two consecutive floods leave Kerala tourism in dire straits