14 years on, Kullu Kala Kendra sans folding roof : The Tribune India

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14 years on, Kullu Kala Kendra sans folding roof

14 years on, Kullu Kala Kendra sans folding roof

The historic Lal Chand Prarthi Kala Kendra in Kullu.



Abhinav Vashisht

Kullu, April 7

The plans for installing a folding roof over the audience gallery of the open air auditorium, Lal Chand Prarthi Kala Kendra, here have not materialised for the past 14 years. From 2009, the proclamations by successive Chief Ministers have remained confined to announcements only and nothing concrete has been done in this regard. Various MPs and MLAs had also announced to install a folding roof, but nothing has been done on ground.

During the closing ceremony of the 2009 International Kullu Dasehra festival, the then Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal had announced that a folding roof would be installed at the Kala Kendra. Former Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh had also announced this during the tenure of his government, but the plan did not come to fruition. In 2018, former Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur had also announced to provide the roof, but there was no headway in this regard. At the conclusion of Dasehra festival last year, Kullu Dasehra Festival Committee Chairman and Chief Parliamentary Secretary (CPS) Sunder Singh Thakur had talked about installing a folding roof, but still there was no development.

Cultural evenings, various programmes and competitions are held at the historic Kala Kendra, the first largest open air theatre of North India, during the seven-day long International Kullu Dasehra festival. Cultural evenings are also held during the three-day state-level Spring Festival from April 28 to 30. Besides, many theatre festivals, government programmes and private events are also conducted in the open air auditorium.

The Kala Kendra has a seating capacity of around 15,000 persons. Many a time the audience has to face hassles due to rain or scorching heat. The Kullu Public Works Department (PWD) had prepared a draft of installing a 15-m high ceiling at a cost of Rs 12 crore and sent it to the Directorate of Language Art and Culture in December 2022. However, the present government has not made any provision for it yet.

After the installation of the folding roof at Kala Kendra, the audience will neither be exposed to sunlight nor will the fun of the programmes get interrupted due to rain. The historical Kala Kendra was built in the 60s by the then minister Lal Chand Prarthi, therefore it was renamed. Many internationally acclaimed stars and artistes have performed in this auditorium.

No provision announced by govt

  • From 2009, the proclamations by successive Chief Ministers have remained confined to announcements only and nothing concrete had been done in this regard. Various MPs and MLAs had also announced to install a folding roof, but nothing has been done on ground
  • The Kala Kendra has a seating capacity of around 15,000 persons. Many a time, the audience has to face hassles due to rain or scorching heat
  • The Kullu Public Works Department (PWD) had prepared a draft of installing a 15-m high ceiling at a cost of Rs 12 crore and sent it to the Directorate of Language Art and Culture in December 2022. However, the present government has not made any provision for it yet

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