Chandigarh set to party at Saturday carnival

Chandigarh, Nov 26 ( Goofy, Minnie Mouse, a slew of sea creatures, all brought alive in colourful floats, will go around this city Saturday, kicking off a two-day carnival. Almost 300,000 visitors are expected at the event.

This year the theme of the annual carnival is Chandigarh Rocking and it will be held at the sprawling Leisure Valley grounds. Besides food, fun and frolic, it will showcase films and folk dances from abroad.

“Special teams from Jordan, Hungary and France will showcase unique features of their respective countries. Sixteen troupes of folk dancers from these countries are expected to participate to make the event more lively and global,” said Amandeep Kaur, director of tourism, Chandigarh.

“There will be an exhibition from the Museum of Budapest and France too will have a stall,” stated Kaur.

The Chandigarh administration is for the first time organising a European Union film festival during the carnival that will screen films from Austria, Hungary, Portugal, Spain, Germany and Italy.

The party will begin with the inaugural carnival parade Saturday. Swaying to drumbeats, participants wearing colourful costumes and masks will carry life-size floats and tableaux on cycle rickshaws and tractor trolleys and move at a leisurely pace throughout the city.

“The parade is one of the main features of our carnival. The idea is to involve all residents of Chandigarh in one or another. Our officials are working day and night to make this event a huge success,” Ram Niwas, home-cum-cultural secretary of Chandigarh, told Inditop.

“We are expecting more than 300,000 visitors from Chandigarh and neighbouring states to come to the carnival. We are also expecting a good number of foreign tourists,” he said.

Hundreds of students of the Government College of Art (GCA), Chandigarh, are busy preparing for the event. They are erecting various structures, fabricating stalls and making a huge entrance gate in the shape of a guitar.

“We are making floats depicting cartoon characters like Goofy, Minnie Mouse and sea creatures like the snail, whale, dolphin and sea horse. It is a great learning experience for us and we are enjoying every bit of it,” Sidhartha Sharma, a student of GCA, told Inditop.

The other attractions include a special food court, an amusement park for children, a vintage car exhibition, folk dances and cultural activities.

During the carnival over 40 stalls will be installed by various NGOs to exhibit musical instruments, rare photographs, replicas of Le Corbusier’s art and a souvenir shop highlighting the creation and the coming up of Chandigarh between 1952 and 1965.