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Governor, teeming tourists captivated by Ooty flower show

Over 1.1 lakh people witnessed the three-day 121st Flower Show at the Government Botanical Garden in Udhagamandalam, which concluded on Sunday. While the crowd was very high on the last day, Horticulture Department officials said the crowd was way less than the estimated 2 lakh persons expected to witness it. Last year the footfall in the event was 1.25 lakh.

Governor, teeming tourists captivated by Ooty flower show
Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao marvels at the floral display in the flower show in Udhagamandalam


Delivering the valedictory address, Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao said he was captivated by the natural beauty of the hills and the flowers showcased at the show. Terming The Nilgiris as nature’s gift, he expressed the need for protecting it as it is among the 34 bio-diversity hotspots in the world and it is one of the four such spots in India. 

Recalling the tree census held at the Raj Bhavan in Chennai and Udhagamandalam, the Governor said that many species indigenous and invasive flora were documented and a coffee table book on the Raj Bhavan’s floral species was also released last month.

Stating that India has taken tremendous steps in protecting its biodiversity, he attributed the growing population and industrialization as reasons for the loss of ecology. “I appeal to all the youth of The Nilgiris to embrace the ‘One Student One Tree campaign’ launched by the University Grants Commission (UGC),” he added. 

Agricultural Production Commissioner and Principal Secretary to the government Gagandeep Singh Bedi said that prizes were distributed to 196 recipients under various categories as part of competitions organised by the Horticulture Department in the Flower Show. Prizes were distributed to winners of private gardens too. 

Cordite Factory in Aravankadu, Coonoor, bagged the coveted prize of ‘The Most Prestigious Governor’s Rolling Cup for The Garden of the Year.’ 

Minister for Agriculture R Duraikannu was present at the valedictory. After the flower show ended, omni buses leaving Udhagamandalam and trains from Coimbatore were fully booked. Due to the high demand, the ticket fares surged in omni buses from Coimbatore to Chennai and other districts. A non-a/c semi sleeper ticket went up to Rs 600 and an a/c semi sleeper ticket cost Rs 1,650. 

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