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Mysuru is all set to celebrate the famous Dasara festival as the final preparation was finished following a ‘puja’ on Wednesday.

A rehearsal was organised on Wednesday for the elephants who will take part in a parade as part of a religious procession in the city. Mysuru Dasara is a 10-day festival, which starts from the first day of Navaratri and concludes on Vijayadashami (Dusshera). This year, Mysuru Dasara will begin from October 7 and will end by October 15.

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Every year the same trained elephants are brought from Nagarhole forest and kept in Mysore Palace till the festival is not over. Teams of animal husbandry and special caretakers are deployed to look after the elephants.

 

This year eight of these trained elephants–Abhimanyu, Cauvery, Chaitra, Lakshmi, Gopalaswami, Dhananjaya, Ashwathama and Vikrama– will take part in the parade.

“Preparations are going on very nicely. This year we brought eight elephants from different camps. They have been housed at palace premises from September 17. Their training is going on. Every day they march 7 kilometres (km) — 3.5 km each in the morning and evening. They are fed with special food like black gram, green gram, rice vegetable, wheat, ” said Karikalan, the incharge of elephants.

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Elephant Abhimanyu will carry the 750 kg Hodah in the parade.

“This is Abhimanyu’s 24th Dasara. It is the third time that he is going to carry the golden Hodah. His condition is very good,” he added.

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A grand procession of the goddess Chamundeshwari’s idol atop an elephant is taken out from Mysore Palace through the streets of the city every year on Dasara. During the festival, the city is decorated with light bulbs, while the famous Mysore Palace turns into a dazzling beauty.