Chandigarh, Feb 26 (IANS) Amidst an assortment of colourful activities like releasing of balloons, playing of bands and the beating of drums, this union territory welcomed the 38th edition of the three-day Rose Festival here Friday.
Chandigarh administrator Shivraj Patil inaugurated the Rose Festival here at the Zakir Hussain Rose Garden which is considered the biggest rose garden in Asia.
Besides roses, there will also be a photography contest, a painting competition, a rose prince and princess contest, a kite flying competition, a rose quiz, live concerts and ‘antakshri’ to engage the tourists coming here.
‘We have invited Bollywood artists like Koena Mitra and Kunal Ganjawala, who will perform live during the festival. There will also be a fashion show by renowned Mumbai designers Libas and Anamika Rawal and performances by a group from Goa,’ Ram Niwas, tourism secretary of Chandigarh, said.
Scores of folk artists, from all across the country, have come here to display their distinctive regional art forms, depicting the ‘unity in diversity’ culture of the country.
The administration is expecting tens of thousands of visitors to come here on each day of the festival.
‘It is really delightful to see so many beautiful roses. I have been coming to the rose festival for the past 20 years with my entire family,’ Ashok Jain, a retired government official, told IANS.
The Rose Garden is an important tourist destination and is thronged by hundreds of visitors from India and abroad every day.
It is spread over 46 acres and has 17,000 plants showcasing nearly 800 varieties of roses.