Bhubaneswar: The annual Bali Yatra fiesta began on the bank of river Mahanadi close to Barabati Fort in Cuttack on Saturday.
Over 1,500 makeshift stalls have been set up on the two fair grounds on the sprawling Mahanadi riverbed and the adjoining Killa Padia. Special pavilions of National Pallishree Mela, Gandhi Shilpa Bazaar and ORMAS-guided self-help groups of women and differently-abled people are the star attractions at the festival.
The stalls have everything from pottery, ethnic, jewellery, costly metals and local spices to house hold products and electronic gadgets.
The fair provides the right platform to budding artists to display their creativity before lakhs of visitors coming to the biggest fair of Odisha.
A variety of famous craft items from all over the country such as brass metal work, painting, incensed wax candles, shawls, kantha embroidery, wooden furniture, phulkary dress, sandalwood items and wooden decorative items, decorative dry flowers and utility bamboo products are on display at the fair.
Apart from this, handicraft, stone carving, wood carving, pattachitra, appliqué and terracotta are also available in the fair.
For food lovers, various Odia delicacies are available at Pallishree mela and it is a great opportunity for visitors to taste all these dishes at one place.
Looking at the expected footfall on the festival grounds over the week, the Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC) has taken up the responsibility to keep the festival site clean and hygienic.
Similarly, the police have made elaborate arrangements to contain crime and maintain law and order at the festival grounds. Fire brigade personnel equipped fire tenders and other fire fighting measures are also deployed at the festival grounds to meet any eventuality.
The week-long festival will continue till November 10.