ENARADA, Mysore, July 10, 2014
Putting an end to all speculations, the world famous Naada Habba (State festival) Dasara festivities will be conducted as per schedule.
There was a confusion regarding conducting Dasara Festivals due to yearlong mourning by members of the wadiyar family following the death of the last scion Srikantadatta Narasimharaja wadiyar in December last year.
The royal family member’s sources said that the palace did not have a tradition of “soothaka” (mourning period), and rituals and traditions will go on.
“There are four Navaratris celebrated in the palace. Vasantha Navaratri soon after Ugadi in April; Ashada Navaratri during June-July ; Sharana Navaratri popularly called Dasara and the Shishira Navaratri that is held during January-February. All the other Navaratris have been held in the palace after the demise of Srikantadatta Wadiyar and hence there is no reason why religious traditions may not be observed for Sharana Navaratri, which is the most important of all,” said the sources.
When the last Maharaja of Mysore passed away in September 1972, the coronation of Srikantadatta Wadiyar took place soon after and Dasara traditions were held in October without a break.
Since Srikantadatta Wadiyar was the direct heir of the last maharaja, there was no legal wrangling over ascension and hence the transition was smooth, the sources added.
The moot question is who will succeed Srikantadatta Wadiyar, as Pramoda Devi Wadiyar, wife of late Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar, has said there was uncertainty caused because of the palace acquisition bill which had hampered an early decision on the succession.
Another source associated with the royal family said the religious rituals and traditions would be observed by one of the male members selected by Ms. Wadiyar while the act of “ascending the throne”, which is part of the private durbar held during Dasara, may not take place. Instead, the throne may be worshiped.
Meamnwhile Pramoda Devi Wadiyar has expressed her desire to continue the customary and traditional practices observed by the family, including the Dasara.
She, however, pointed out the uncertainty posed by the Mysore Palace Acquisition Act, 1998 initiated by the State government and subtly hinted that the succession issue will depend on resolving it.
In a release, Ms. Wadiyar said, “It is my bounden duty to uphold the tradition of succession and continuation of all religious practices observed by the family. But at the same time, it is difficult to enable a designate to face the challenges of an uncertain future”.
Chief minister Siddaramiah is expected to meet Pramoda devi wadiyar shortly to discuss the dasara festivities issue in Bangalore.