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As Kerala fights grief to celebrate Onam, PM Modi hopes festival will give 'new strength' to people

Onam, the harvest festival, is being observed with sombre mood in Kerala as the deluge as left little to celebrate.   

Edited by: India TV News Desk, Thiruvananthapuram [ Published on: August 25, 2018 14:07 IST ]
Image Source : ANI

Temples that are usually decked up with flowers and lamps on Onam wore a plain look. (Photo/ANI)

The variant colours of rangoli (known as pookalam in the state) outside homes in Kerala are missing this year as the southern state is slowly trying to pick up pieces and get back on its feet after the devastating floods which left lakhs homeless and killed hundreds.

Onam, the harvest festival, is being observed with sombre mood in Kerala as the deluge as left little to celebrate. 

Amid the gloom, President Ramnath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed that Onam will give courage to people of Kerala to make a new beginning.

"Good wishes to fellow citizens, particularly to our brothers and sisters in Kerala, on Onam. May this festival mark a new beginning for all those in Kerala recovering in the aftermath of the floods, and gradually beginning to rebuild their lives," President Kovind said.

PM Modi expressed hope that the festival of Onam will give new strength to the people of Kerala to overcome the advertises in the aftermath of the floods. He said the country is behind the people of the state.

"May this Onam give further strength to the people of Kerala to overcome the adversities they have been facing for the past few days," he wrote on Twitter.

Temples across the state witnessed a steady stream of people on the occasion of Onam. However, temples that are usually decked up with flowers and lamps on Onam wore a plain look as no decoration or special arrangements were made at the temples in the wake of floods.  

"There are no celebrations this year abd we haven't decorated the temple as the people are suffering because of floods," Sukumaran Nair, secretary Shri Ayyappa Temple in Anachal, told news agency ANI.

Lakhs of people living in relief camps in the state celebrated the festival by preparing special Onam meal.

Earlier this month, the Kerala government had decided to cancel the Onam celebrations and decided to divert the fund meant for it to the Chief Minister's Distress Relief fund.  

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