Bhubaneswar:1/11/19: The state government Friday decided to accord Cuttack’s annual Baliyatra with ‘State Level Festival’ status. This move is aimed at bringing in more state involvement and will help attract more tourists.
A high level meeting on this context was held here Friday under the chairmanship of Law minister Pratap Jena at Lok Seva Bhawan. Tourism and Culture Minister Jyoti Prakash Panigrahi was also present there.
The meeting deliberated on the long historical tradition of Baliyatra and its significance in the maritime history of Odisha. In view of that, Baliyatra of Cuttack deserves the special status of a State Level Festival with support being extended by all state government departments, it was decided.
To implement the decision, organiser of Baliyatra – Cuttack based District Council of Culture under the Odia Language, Literature & Culture Department will bring out a notification recognising Baliyatra as a State Level Festival.
Baliyatra will be managed by the District Council of Culture under the chairmanship of Cuttack Collector as an annual cultural and trade festival.
The Odia Language, Literature & Culture Department will extend a special annual grant of Rs 20 lakhs exclusively for organising Baliyatra to the District Council of Culture in Cuttack in addition to its regular assistance for other District Level Festivals of Cuttack District.
Baliyatra of Cuttack will find place in the annual calendar of State Level Festivals of the Department of Tourism which will extend an annual grant of Rs20 Lakh for this festival.
Further the Department of Housing and Urban Development will extend another grant of Rs 50 Lakh to Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC) for development of infrastructure exclusively for Baliyatra every year.
For making the Baliyatra at Cuttack more attractive, several government departments including agriculture, animal resources, industry, SS & EPD, forest, textiles etc would participate in this festival to showcase their activities and in turn would make adequate budgetary provision for the same.
The sponsoring departments will be properly branded at Baliyatra venue.
The EIC, PHD will install 100 temporary toilets at Baliyatra venue and will make adequate arrangements for water facilities there. PHD will also clean the water stored in the lakes being developed at Baliyatra Ground for water sports activities.
All other departments such as water resources department, works department, CESU, health department will make necessary arrangements at the venue and funds required for the same will be met out of their departmental budget.
Commissionerate Police will manage law and order and traffic. Directorate of Fire Services, ODRAF and NDRF will extend necessary cooperation to Cuttack collector for smooth organisation of the festival