No takers: Sound & Light show at S'patna

No takers: Sound & Light show at S'patna

The entrance of the Sound and Light programme venue, at Anekote Gate, in Srirangapatna.

The ‘Sound and Light’ show, which was started by the Department of Tourism at the Anekote Gate here in 2014 to give a boost to tourism in the district and to bring alive the history of the town may be suspended again due to a poor response from tourists.

The programme, which was stopped due to technical problems for about one-and-a-half years, was relaunched on October 16.

The Karnataka State Tourism Development Corporation (KSTDC) is undertaking it. The show is held every day from 7 pm to 7.40 pm. Eight people, including three technicians, have been employed to run the show.

The Tourism department, which expected the show to be a hit, is disappointed due to the poor attendance of tourists. Sometimes, there have been only three to four people after the show was relaunched on October 16, the employees said.

The main drawback of the show is the use of Kannada language, which is not understood by tourists as most of them are from other states and nations. Some tourists, who purchase tickets to watch the show, leave within minutes as they do not understand the language.

A few of them have even demanded that the entry fee be reimbursed. While Rs 10 is charged for a person who visits the place during day time to see the exhibits, Rs 50 is charged for the Sound and Light programme in the evening.

Freeway for residents

Speaking to DH, KSTDC manager Suresh said the local residents use the Anekote Gate area, the venue of the programme, as a shortcut. People keep walking in and out with cattle and two-wheelers also pass through the two gates on either side of the place. If the gates are locked, they break it. From October 16, the collection is just Rs 57,000, which is not sufficient even to pay the salaries of the employees, he said.

The cost of power for each show is around Rs 500. In case there is a power shutdown, a diesel generator is used, which escalates the cost to Rs 1,000.

As all this causing huge losses, there is a possibility of suspending the programme for three months, said an employee of KSTDC.

The Tourism department had launched the programme at a cost of Rs 3 crore to mark the 150th anniversary of the First War of Independence, on November 11, 2014. The programme had to be suspended twice due to various reasons.

Despite spending Rs 30 lakh for relaunching, it has received a lukewarm response. A lack of publicity has also affected the programme.