The fortnight long Surajkund International Crafts Mela is back.
The 29th version of the fair is scheduled to be inaugurated on Sunday by Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar in the presence of Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh and Union minister of state for tourism and culture Mahesh Sharma.
The fair — started in 1987 — will feature Lebanon as its partner country this year, with officials from the embassy of Lebanon expected to take part in the opening day’s festivities.
“Besides attracting lakhs of domestic and foreign visitors each year, the fair has helped in reviving the heritage crafts of India. This year, many new initiatives have been undertaken, like the introduction of free mobile application called Surajkund Mela for smartphones and online ticketing through bookmyshow. Mela entry tickets will also be available at 22 Delhi Metro stations,” said Sumita Mishra, chief administrator of Surajkund Mela Authority and managing director, Haryana Tourism.
In order to avoid rush during weekends, the Surajkund Mela Authority has decided to hike the entry fee on Saturdays and Sundays by about 30 percent.
During the weekdays, the entry ticket will cost Rs 70 where as during weekends it will be Rs 100.
Elaborate security arrangements will been put in place for the fair.
Around 120 CCTV cameras and 60 night vision cameras will be installed throughout the mela premises. Mishra said the mela has been divided into five zones where eight fire tenders have been kept on stand by to deal with emergencies.
The mela timings also has been changed this year. Officials said the fair will now be open from 10.30am to 8.30pm.