ALAPPUZHA: Alappuzha, the Venice of the East, is all set to host the 59th Kerala School Youth Festival from December 7 to 9. The final review meeting of the arrangements, for what is called as Asia’s largest youth festival, will be held here on Sunday and will be attended by various ministers and department officers.
Public Works Minister G Sudhakaran will preside over the meeting. Ministers C Raveendranath, T M Thomas Isaac and P Thilothaman, director of public instruction K V Mohankumar, higher secondary director Sudheer Babu, VHS director A Farooq, Education Department additional director Jessy Joseph, and others will attend.
Modest arrangements this time
After the floods devastated the state, the department is organising the event without much fanfare. However, there is no change in the normal schedule, said additional director Jessy Joseph. “No procession or mega inaugural event will be taken out this time as the state is suffering financial crunch. The event will be conducted avoiding all possible luxuries. The arrangements at the venues will be carried out with maximum sponsorships. However, there will not be any obstacle to participants, nor a lack of any basic arrangements,” Jessy said.
Venues named after prominent literary works
Around 14,000 participants will contest in 158 events to be held across 29 venues in three days. The venues are named after the literary works of renowned writers, who were born or have spent their major lifetime, in Alappuzha. The names were chosen based on the nature of the events to be staged on the respective venues.The venues (number 1 to 5), which are assigned for dance competitions, are named as ‘Utharaswayamvaram’, ‘Mayoorasandesham’, ‘Kalyana Sougandhikam’, ‘Nithya Kanyaka’, and ‘Chilamboli’.
The oppana competition will be staged on venue number six, named as Vayalar Ramavarma’s ‘Ayisha’; ‘Sargasangeetham’ for classical music and light music; ‘Avanavan Kadamba’ of Kavalam Narayana Panicker for folk art; Thoppil Bhasi’s ‘Aswamedham’ as the venue for drama. The name of the green pavilion is Hortus Malabaricus, written by Hendrik van Rheede with contributions from Itty Achuthan.
‘Souhrida Auto’ initative
The district administration has decided to start a ‘Souhrida Auto’ (friendly auto) initiative to help students, their guardians and teachers to travel between venues at low rates. It is being implemented with the help of the autorickshaw drivers’ unions in the town.
The organisers have also arranged 25 school buses to ferry students and teachers, coming from other districts, from the KSRTC bus station and the railway station. The buses will also transport them to their respective venues from their places of accommodation. Though the festival is held across 29 venues, food supply centres will function only at four venues. The buses will bring the students to the food supply centres from various venues. A painting on a single canvas will be arranged on Alappuzha beach on Sunday as part of the arts festival. The painting will begin at 4 pm. Public can participate in the painting, officers said.