Dewa fair in Barabanki sees huge turnout
The Barabanki district administration inaugurated Dewa mela, a mega fair organised at Dewa Sharif— about 40 kilometers from Lucknow.lucknow Updated: Oct 07, 2017 15:25 IST
The Barabanki district administration on Friday inaugurated Dewa mela, a mega fair organised at Dewa Sharif — about 40 kilometers from Lucknow. Unlike previous years’ themes that have revolved around communal harmony and prosperity, this year’s theme is on cleanliness — ‘Ek kadam swachhata ki ore’ (One step towards cleanliness).
Inaugurating the over 100-year-old fair, said to have started as homage to Sufi saint Haji Waris Ali Shah, Shanti Tiwari, wife of Akhilesh Tiwari, district magistrate of Barabanki, said, “This fair is a perfect amalgamation of our Ganga-Jamuni tehzeeb in which people of all castes and faiths meet and celebrate together.” Superintendent of police (SP) and senior administrative officers, including the chief development officer, the chief medical officer and additional district magistrates, were also present.
During the 10-day fest, the message of cleanliness would be strongly sent out to the masses, said the organisers.
Among the various attractions, what stands out are the soulful qawwalis rendered by faqirs on the threshold of the dargah (mausoleum). That and the longlasting scent of the ‘itra’ sprinkled on every chaadar at the shrine.
Other than the traditional delights, this year, the fair has dedicated a separate section for highlighting the ongoing welfare schemes of the state and central governments. Besides, different departments have also set up their stalls to talk about the development work they are doing.
Just like previous years, a grand cattle market has also been set up, where various species of buffalos, cows and horses have been displayed. “There are horses worth Rs25 lakh available for sale,” said Neelima Kumari, assistant director, information, Barabanki.
Speaking about the elaborate security arrangements, she said, “Around 10 high resolution CCTV cameras have been installed all across the fair area to keep a tab on visitors. Besides, watchtowers have been established to keep an eye on the activities.”
The shrine of Haji Waris Ali Shah attracts pilgrims of all religions throughout the year. However, during Dewa mela, this crowd is such that keeping an estimate of the number of visitors becomes a challenging task for the authorities.