Bargarh: The world famous Dhanu Yatra will begin from January 11, next year, informed Bargarh district Collector Indramani Tripathy on Monday.
The date was announced after a meeting of district officials under the chairmanship of Collector Tripathy today.
The annual Dhanu Yatra, believed to be the largest open air theatre in the world, will continue till January 21. The event will entertain the visitors from all over the state and country.
The festival is based on Krishna Leela and Mathura Vijay. The event which will set the stage for all mythological places related to Lord Krishna based in the ancient city itself.
During the 11-day festival, Bargarh town will be renamed as Mathura — the birthplace and homeland of Lord Krishna. Besides, River Jeera will resemble river Yamuna, Amapali, located on the outskirts of the town, and will be transformed into Gopapura.
Kansa rules the small western Odisha town Bargarh for 11 days. The tyrannical rule of Kansa, his death and the exploits of Lord Krishna are enacted in 14 main places in Mathura and Gopapura.
Notably, the annual festival came into being in 1947-48 to celebrate Indian’s Independence and to symbolise the victory of good over evil.
Previous year’s highlight of the festival was actor Bhubaneswar Pradhan playing the role of Kansa after a gap of 17 years. Over 70 artists had performed in the Dhanu Yatra at Mathura, another 45 artists played different roles at Gopapura during the festival.
This apart, around 3,000 artists of 120 cultural troupes from across the state and from neighbouring states performed at the Raj Durbar, Nanda Durbar and Rangamahal during the festival.
During Dhanu Yatra, Kansa moves round the city and slaps fine on offenders on the streets. He also enters government offices and pulls up officials for lapses. People become his obedient subjects. The rule of Kansa symbolises an oppressive rule and the coronation of Ugrasen marks the beginning of democracy.