Telangana Floral Festival
Thank you, Madam Speaker.
October is springtime in Canberra, a season characterised by abundant and colourful flowers in garden beds and blossoms on trees. In Telangana State, which is located on southern India’s high Deccan Plateau, October marks the end of the monsoon and the transition to winter. Similar to Canberra, however, it is a time when flowers bloom in a riot of colours across the uncultivated and barren plains of the region.
Because of the abundance of flowers, this is also the time of year when Bathukamma is celebrated. This festival has, over the years, become an important symbol of Telangana culture and identity. Members of the ACT Telangana Association have continued to sponsor this important event here in their adopted homeland, and this year the festival was held in the Belconnen Arts Centre, in my electorate of Ginninderra.
I rise today to publicly thank Shanti Reddy, president of the ACT Telangana Association, for inviting me to attend this festival two weeks ago. Bathukamma is specifically observed by Telangana women, heralding the beauty of vibrant nature. The centrepiece of the event, quite literally, is a large arrangement of seasonal flowers. Colourful blooms are arranged on a large plate in seven concentric circles, similar in appearance to the monumental towers that mark the entrances of Hindu temples in southern India.