The 10-day-long Dussehra festival started today at the Sri Durgamalleswara Swamivarla Devastanaam popularly known as Kanaka Durga temple in the city.
The festival began with traditional rituals being performed by the priests at the temple located atop Indrakiladri hills.
Andhra Pradesh Minister for Water Resources, Devnineni Umamaheswara Rao visited the temple and interacted with the devotees.
He said that the AP government for the first time has declared this festival as a state festival.
Rao further said that on October 19, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu will present silk sarees to goddess ‘Durga’.
Considering a heavy rush of devotees for ‘Vijayadashami’ (October 22), the minister asked officials concerned to make adequate arrangements.
Temple’s executive officer Ch Narsinga Rao and his family and Deputy Commissioner of Police Ashok Kumar offered first prayers at the temple.
From tomorrow, devotees are allowed to worship in between 3 AM to 11 PM.
Meanwhile, security has been stepped up for the festival and appropriate traffic arrangements have been made.
Accordingly, private vehicles will not be allowed on temple ghat road for all 10 days, a release from city police said.
VIP’s will be allowed to take ‘darshan’ from 6 to 8 AM and from 3 to 4 PM by purchasing ticket of Rs 300.
Earlier, Krisha district collector had launched an App which provides all information related to the festival.