Amid Covid 19 pandemic, Keralites across the globe is celebrating Thiruvonam today, the biggest cultural festival of the State.
Thiruonam is the most auspicious day of Onam festival. This annual harvest festival of the State celebrates the visit of mythical and righteous King Mahabali. Onam is being celebrated by all Keralaites irrespective of religion symbolising secularism and harmony.
Onam marks the season of plenty, but this time the Covid pandemic had taken the sheen out of the festivities. As authorities had urged to follow strict guidelines for a safer onam, people at large will be celebrating the festival in their homes.
As large gatherings are prohibited onapookalam, onakalikal, onasadhya, will all be restricted to one’s own home, as safety remains the primary concern.
But the spirit of Onam, that instills hope and prosperity, is in its full glory, that hopes to bring a new dawn free of pandemic and a better future.
President and Vice President have greeted the people on the occasion of Onam.
In his message, President Ramnath Kovind said, the festival of Onam is a symbol of country’s rich cultural heritage. It is also an expression of the gratitude to mother nature at the arrival of new crop.
Mr Kovind said, in the times of Covid-19 pandemic, people from the weaker sections of the society must be taken care of and adequate measures be taken to protect and safeguard the families and society at large.
He hoped that this festival will strengthen the sense of cooperation and brotherhood in the country and pave the way for prosperity while living in harmony with Mother Nature.
Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu said, Onam is celebrated to honor the memory of the legendary King Mahabali, the honest, kind and compassionate ruler of Kerala.
He said, Onam day is marked by traditional games, music and dancing and the delectable onasadya, the grand feast.
Beautiful flower carpets are laid to welcome king Mahabali into homes and hearts. Mr Naidu said, Onam is an occasion for family and friends to come together and celebrate.
Vice President urged the people to celebrate Onam in a modest way at home, strictly adhering to COVID health and hygiene protocols.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has greeted the people on the auspicious occasion of Onam.
In a tweet, Mr Modi said, this is a unique festival, which celebrates harmony. He said, it is also an occasion to express gratitude to our hardworking farmers.
In his Mann Ki Baat Programme on Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the verve of Onam festival can be felt everywhere and it is turning out to be an international festival.
He said, the zest of Onam has reached distant shores of foreign lands – be it America, Europe or Gulf countries.
Mr Modi said during the festival, people buy something new, decorate their homes, prepare Pookalam, enjoy Onam-Saadiya. Variety of games, competitions are also held, he said.