BARGARH :The 11-day open-air theatre festival of Dhanu Yatra lost its sheen owing to lack of transparency and commercialisation. According to experts in the district, the festival which marks the victory of good over evil has lost its relevance and is being used for political purposes.
Irked over the alleged improper management of the festival, advocate Santosh Dash filed an RTI plea to seek details about the utilisation of Government funds allocated for Dhanu Yatra. “Sub-Collector of Bargarh responded to the plea saying Dhanu Yatra doesn’t come under RTI purview,” Dash said.
The culture of inviting officials as guests and providing them special seats and turbans to wear on the stage had apparently undermined the significance of the festival and trivialised Kansa’s importance. “Junior officers are often influencing organisers to invite their superiors as guests for their vested interests,” sources said.
The Government officers who were once in awe of Kansa and took lessons from the play had turned it into a mockery, the experts added.During previous years, no one was allowed to climb up the stage at Kansa Durbar. Sources claimed this year a lot of people, including guests, were allowed to sit on the stage.
In a bid to streamline the management of the festival, a committee was formed earlier comprising 11 life members and presidents and secretaries of registered clubs of Bargarh.
After the committee got divided over personal issues, supporters of the political party in power started organising the festival until the district administration stepped in. Locals claimed that the district administration was not doing justice to the festival.