Karnataka turns 61! And for The Akshaya Patra Foundation, Karnataka is the birthplace of Food for Education initiative.
How many of us in Karnataka have marked out November 1st on our holiday calendar, planning getaways and lazy breakfasts, secure in the knowledge that it’s a public holiday? We know what it is – It’s Kannada Rajyotsava! – And we know when it is, but do we know what it signifies?
Here’s a quick look at what Kannada Rajyotsava is all about.
November 1st is Kannada Rajyotsava, the day that the state of Karnataka was formed. On this day, in 1956 all the Kannada speaking areas of South India were merged into a new state. The state was initially called Mysore, but this was considered too reminiscent of the old princely regiment, and the name was changed to Karnataka on 1st November, 1973.
Kannada Rajyotsava is celebrated very enthusiastically all over the state. The state is dotted with Red and Yellow as the Karnataka flag is hoisted at important locations, and the state anthem is sung. The beauty of this day is that it is enjoyed with as much excitement across age groups, religion, gender and income, making it a truly wholesome and inclusive celebration.
Local citizens also get to honour the good samaritans of society as the State Government bestows the Rajyotsava awards on people who have contributed in a noteworthy way to the development of the state.
Kannada Rajyotsava is really a day to pay tribute to the state of Karnataka, celebrate its progress and work to its continued development. This can be done in many ways according to your individual capabilities.
For The Akshaya Patra Foundation it was by providing a means to solve classroom hunger in the state. Today, across six kitchens in the state (at H.K. Hill Bengaluru; Vasanthapura, Bengaluru; Ballari; Hubballi; Mangaluru and Mysuru) we reach out to 4,86,172 children in 2,968 Government and Government-aided schools every day. While we supply food for education to these children from our highly specialised, centralised kitchens, we know there are thousands more in need of our help.
But we wouldn’t have made it this far in Karnataka without the support of our donors and corporates, but most importantly the Government of Karnataka. For us Kannada Rajyotsava is not just a public holiday, it’s a time to honour this state, the birthplace of our Foundation.