The week-long International Kullu Dussehra festival commenced with traditional fervour at Dhalpur ground on Tuesday.

Governor Bandaru Dattatraya inaugurated the festival by participating in the Rathyatra of Lord Raghunath.

Felicitating the people of the valley on the auspicious occasion of Dussehra, which symbolizes the victory of the truth over evil, he said that the culture of Himachal Pradesh was unique and had a distinct identity. The fairs and festivals celebrated here round the year provide a glimpse of rich traditions and beliefs of the people, he added.

He said that the people of the state deserve appreciation for preserving their rich culture, age-old customs and traditions in the present era of modernisation, which needs to be carried for future generations. Later, the Governor inaugurated the exhibition put up by various government departments, boards, corporations and other non-government organisations.

He also visited the stalls and appreciated the exhibits.

More than 331 deities from various parts of Kullu district are participating in this festival. Earlier, the Governor has accorded warm welcome on his arrival at Bhuntar Airport.

Forest, Transport and Youth Services and Sports Minister Govind Singh Thakur, Chief Justice of High Court of Tripura Justice Sanjay Karol, Judge of Himachal Pradesh High Court Justice Dharam Chand Chaudhary, Deputy Commissioner Kullu Dr Richa Verma and officers of the district administration were present on the occasion.