After declaring Bathukamma as a state festival and allocating crores of rupees for the celebrations, the state government is putting in efforts to create awareness among people, especially women, about the need to protect tanks and other water bodies, through the festival.
As part of it, a team of women employees of various government departments are touring various district in Telangana, taking part in the Bathukamma celebrations and holding discussions with local officials on proection of lakes, tanks and other water bodies.
Members of SHGs, anganwadis and para-medical staff are being involved in the official celebrations of Bathukamma. They will campaign on protection of the tanks and popularise the slogan ‘Prakruthini Parirakshinchu Kundam Cheruvulanu Samskarinchu kundam’ (Save environment-save lakes).
At present, the team is touring Karimnagar, Warangal Adilabad and Nizmabad districts. The women employees will take part in Bathukamma celebrations and then interact with the Adilabad district officials on September 26.
Officials of the panchayat raj, irrigation and forest departments conducted a survey from September 19 to 23 and found that there were 6,505 tanks in the district. Steps would be taken to protect the tanks from being encroached by grabbers.
The officials also collected details regarding area of encroached land, pertaining to lakes and tanks and the area of cultivation under each tank and these details were submitted to the state government. The women are also campaigning on discrimination against girl child through their slogans ‘Bathikinchu Kundam Chadivinchu Kundam Ada Pillalni’. The state government is of the opinion that protection of tanks would help in carrying forward Telangana traditional festival Bathukamma.
Jalasadhana Samiti district president Nainala Goverdhan said protection of tanks was a must to continue the Bathukamma festival. "Women empowerment is another aspect on which campaigning is on during Bathukamma celebrations," he said.
In Nizamabad, Bathuka-mma celebrations began with fervour on Wednesday evening. Women and girls took part in the celebrations with enthusiasm. The celebrations will conclude on October 2, when Saddula Bathukamma will be worshipped.
Women employees of various government departments took part in the celebrations at their respective offices. District collector D. Ronald Rose inaugurated Bathukamma celebrations at TTDC building in Dichpally on Wednesday evening and also took part in it.