Rajahmundry: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu will today inaugurate the 'Godavari Harathi' festival, celebrating the sacred Godavari river on Pushkar ghat, in East Godavari district.
"The Chief Minister will arrive from Chittoor district this evening by flight and proceed to Pushkhar ghat, where he will inaugurate the festival, which is expected to be attended by around 600 people from all walks of life, including artists and scholars," Godavari Pushkarams' special officer K Dhanujaya Reddy said.
From today, 'Harathi' (aarti) will be offered to river Godavari at 6 PM everyday, he said, after holding a meeting with Buddhavarapu Charitable Trust, which organises the festival, and officials concerned.
Buddhavarapu Charitable Trust will organise the daily Harathi to Godavari from today, he said.
East Godavari District Magistrate H Arun Kumar, who reviewed the arrangements, said the 250-metre-long ghat was modernised and all facilities such as toilets, dress rooms, have been set up for the convenience of the pilgrims.
Reddy, along with Rajahmundry SP (Urban) S Harikrishna, district Sub-Collector V Vijayarama Rao and Municipal Commissioner J Murali, visited the Pushkar ghat and reviewed the preparations for the event.
He also urged SP Harikrishna to take all precautionary measures in view of a large number of people expected to throng the festival venue.
Meanwhile, in a separate statement, the state Culture department released a list of programmes, including dances and stage plays, that will be held during the 12-day 'Godavari Maha Pushkaralu' beginning July 14.