Saras Mela attracts crowds on second day, high prices of items upset visitors

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Bathinda
  • Updated: Mar 08, 2015 20:30 IST

The 12-day Saras cultural mela attracted a huge crowd on its second day on Sunday. People came to enjoy various events of at the mela. Traditional folk item 'Bazi' attracted the public and the 'well of death' was also a centre of attraction. Ticket prices for the amusement section are comparatively high. Food items were also being sold on 20-30% higher rates than the market rate.

As on the first day of the mela, a lot of people came to the mela. Stalls for sale of different types of handiworks were also attracting the visitors in huge numbers. Stalls for handmade decoration pieces, hand block painted cloths, wooden and soil utensils, handmade jewellery, handmade flowers, flower pots made with sand, alloys and wood, carpets and packaged food items like pickle, jam, chatni, dry fruits were being run by self-help groups from various states of the country.

Mega Kinu, who came from Arunachal Pradesh, told that she is participating for the first time in this festival and she liked the atmosphere. She runs a stall of hand-made flowers and metallic pots. She further told that people are trying to bargain for prices and she was not happy with that. Vikram, who came from Tamil Nadu, had not succeeded to sell even a single item till 3pm whereas Golayappa from Andhra Pradesh was happy with his sales.

A heritage village has also been built in the arena where different antique cultural items were being exhibited. The shows of traditional gymnastic skills of 'Baazi' were being performed by the teams from Bhage ke village and Gurjant Singh of Ramnagar. The audience enjoyed the adventurous show in the 'well of death'.

People purchased different types of items. Rekha Rani, who came with her husband and children from Kotkapura, said that decoration items are priced very high as these items are available at lesser cost in the market, whereas Gurmeet Singh from Bathinda said that the clothes being sold here, have the same prices as in the market.

Sukhjinder Singh and Jatinder Singh Khaira of Bathinda alleged that eatables were being sold at 20% to 30% higher rates than those in the market. Many people also complained about the ticket rates of swings and amusement, but, all appreciated one thing that this mela is a good place for entertainment and it should be organised every year in the city.

Rajasthan's Lingamaghni Haar songs and Punjabi folk dance 'Jhoomar' were performed by artistes of the North Zone Cultural Centre (NZCC) on Sunday evening. Varinder Sharma, ADC(D), Batinda, said that there is free entry for students, coming with teachers, and children under 10 years of age. He appealed to the parents and teachers to bring their children to the mela so that they could have a glimpse of the traditional culture.

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