Thiruvananthapuram | Christians in Kerala celebrated Christmas with traditional gaiety and fervour rejoicing the birth of Jesus Christ. People thronged Churches in large numbers for midnight masses and special prayers. Churches, irrespective of denominations, were decorated with X’mas trees, stars and other illuminations.
Most Christian houses, both in towns and villages, had been decked up with decorative stars and cribs days before the festival. Carol singers, commemorating the birth of Christ, were doing the rounds for some weeks across the state. Hotels in the state also joined the festive mood offering special Christmas lunch and buffet dinners at special rates.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Opposition Leader V S Achuthanandan extended Christmas greetings to the people. Chandy, in his greetings, hoped that the festival would bring peace and harmony to all people in the state. Christian community in Kerala comprises about 24 per cent of the state’s 3.2 crore population.
In Kerala, agog with festivities for the past few days, churches and homes were tastefully decorated with stars and cribs. The festive spirit soaked Tamil Nadu where people from several parts of the country thronged the Shrine Basillica of Our Lady of Health at Vailankanni in Nagapattinam district to celebrate Christmas. The yuletide spirit also swept West Bengal as revellers lined up outside churches and confectioneries.
President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted the nation on the joyous occasion saying the festival signifies ideals of brotherhood, love and compassion. Bollywood celebrities including Amitabh Bachchan, Akshay Kumar, Anupam Kher, Abhishek Bachchan, Ileana D’Cruz, Amrita Rao, Vivek Oberoi among others took to Twitter to wish for peace and happiness to their fans on Christmas.
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