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Ellora-Ajanta International Festival inaugurated

Pic Credit : Sagar Sonar, Aurangabad
Maharashtra Chief MinisterDevendra Fadnavis today announced that the Ajanta-Ellora Festival will be held every year, instead of after every four years, to give boost to tourism in the Marathwada region. Speaking at inaugural function of three-day Ellora-Ajanta International Festival, one of the biggest cultural events in Marathwada region near Kailash temple of Ellora caves in Ellora about 35 km from here tonight, he said that the state government hasdecided to start 'Visit to Maharashtra' in the state to attract more tourists including foreigners, which will boost the tourism industry in the region.

The Festival has been organized by the Ellora-Ajantha International Festival Committee, in association with Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation after a gap of four years. Prominent among those present on the occasion were state Assembly Speaker Haribhau Bagade, Guardian Minister Ramdas Kadam,Tourism Minister Jaykumar Rawal and Mr Fadanvis' wife Amruta. After the inaugural function, Mahagami director ParvatiDutta, a renowned Kathak dancer, performed Verul Nruthya Darshan andPurnashri Raut also performed Odissi dance, while Saniaya Patanakar presented classical songs.

Also Pandit Apegaonkar and Bert Cornolish presented a'jugalbandi' between Sitar and Mrudung respectively, while PresiSingh also performed Shivshakti Nrutya and Marathi cine actress Nishiganda Wad hosted the programme. Earlier in the evening, Mr Fadanvis attended a function of international Buddist culture programme at Beed bypass road in Aurangabad. Tomorrow onwards, the festival will be held at Soneri Mahalat premises of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathwada University Campus. Tomorrow, on the second day of the Festival, Ajay-Atul willpresent a live music concert with their team of artistes includingShreya Ghosal, Kunal Ganjawala, Khrusikesh Ranade, Yogita Godbole,Priyanka Barve, Amrita Khanwilkar, Abhijit Sawant and Sonali Kulkarni. And, on concluding day of the Festival, Sufi and Qawaali fame Adanan Sami will present Sufi songs and qawaalis, Kanika Kapoorwill perform vocal songs and Bollyhood actress Tisca Chopra willhost the programme also at Soneri Mahal.

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