ALAPPUZHA: The Curtain came down on the three-day extravaganza of art, music and dance on Sunday. As in the previous year, the 59th State School Arts Festival witnessed a nail-biting competition between the defending champion Kozhikode and last year’s runners-up Palakkad.
When the results of almost all the competitions were announced on Sunday midnight, Palakkad topped the rank table with a score of 905 while Kozhikode stood second with 902 points. In fact, the results of some of the items were not available at the time of filing the report
Last year’s host Thrissur stands third with 878 points while Kannur district is just behind with 876 points. Meanwhile, Malappuram which was in the third position last year, was relegated to fifth place. However, the disappointment of the host and neighbouring district Ernakulam continued on the final day of the fest as they had to be content with seventh and sixth position respectively. However, Ernakulam district maintained a lead in the Sanskrit fest with 90 points followed by Kannur and Palakkad with 89 points. Whereas in Arabic fest, Palakkad adjusted the point table in the top with Kozhikode and Malappuram behind.
The whole picture of the festival would be final around 3 am on Monday. Since the event - considered to be Asia’s largest school youth festival - was conducted without any trappings of luxury, there was no concluding ceremony. As per the report, this year’s festival was conducted with a minimum budget of ` 40 lakh.
Earlier in the day, the festival witnessed an unruly incident at the Karmal auditorium where the vanchipaattu competition was undergoing. The participants raised allegation the judges were not qualified enough.
It was after Dhanya S Kumar, Deputy Director of Education, intervened and assured a fool-proof result, the protesters called off their allegation. The group dance witnessed inordinate delay as groups took time to contact the backstage or be present on the premises even after their cluster’s performances had begun. This led to the officials to go on stage and give a warning such groups will be disqualified.
The last-minute venue change happened even on the third day and it left the participants in the lurch. On the final day, residents of Alappuzha thronged the venues.
Next youth fest at Kasargod
Alappuzha: The 60th State youth festival will take place in Kasargod. The district will be hosting the festival after a hiatus of 27 years.