Keralites today celebrated Onam, their most important and colourful festival, with traditional gaiety and fervour commemorating a mythical past of plenty, peace and equality.
Homes and temples were decorated with floral decks to welcome the mythical King Mahabali, who is believed to visit his subjects on the 'Thiruvonam' day of the Malayalam month of Chingam (first month of the Malayalam calendar).
Cutting across class, caste and religious barriers, all sections of people joined the harvest festival.
Legend has it that Kerala was once ruled by the 'Asura' king Mahabali, under whose reign everyone were happy and lived in an Utopia where falsehood and deception were unknown.
The 'Devas', however, grew jealous of the popular king and had him banished down to the netherworld by Lord Vishnu, who incarnated as Vamana, the dwarf, for the purpose.Before going down, Mahabali secured a boon from Vishnu that he would visit his subjects on 'Thiruvonam' day every year.
Over the centuries, Onam has assumed a secular dimension and state-sponsored cultural programmes and public festivities have become an integral part of the festival.
Wearing new clothes and enjoying a sumptuous feast called 'sadya' comprising rice, curries and scores of sweet and hot delicacies served on plantain leaf is a main feature of the festival.
State agencies have organised special Onam fairs all over the state for supply of essentials and vegetables at subsidised prices, which brought much relief to the common people reeling under steep hike in prices of the commodities.
Though north and central districts had been lashed by heavy rains ahead of the festivities,the weather has brightened since yesterday.
Kerala Governor MOH Farook, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and leaders of various political parties greeted people on the occasion.
Keralites Celebrate Onam World Over
READ MORE IN:
THE LATEST ISSUE
- PM Modi 'Feels He Has It Under Control': Trump On Kashmir At G7 Summit
- INX Media Case: No Relief For Chidambaram, Court Extends CBI Custody By 4 Days
- So Where Will Assam's 'Illegal Immigrants' Go? Government Says NRC Not Death Knell
- Opposition Using 'Maarak Shakti...': Pragya Thakur On Death Of BJP Leaders -- Video
- BSP Chief Mayawati Slams Rahul Gandhi, Opposition Leaders For Kashmir Visit
- Strong And Decisive Leadership May Not Help Always. It Can Cause More Damage Than Good
- Kashmiris Are Angry, Yet They Are Calm. Why?
- Indian Armed Forces, Civilians Continue To Bleed In Internal Conflicts, But Do We Care?
- On India's 73rd Independence Day, A Letter to Pehlu Khan
- The Valley Has Fallen Into Rigor Mortis
- BBC, Northern Ireland, And Kashmir – Where Shekhar Kapur Got It Wrong
- Government Sacks 22 More Tax Officers For Graft, Misconduct
- Watch | Florida Golfer Continues With His Game As 7-Feet Alligator Strolls Casually Next To Him
- Siddaramaiah Says K'taka Govt Will Not Last Long, Urges Congress To Prepare For Early Polls
- BJP To Hold Nationwide Mass Contact Programme To Highlight Significance Of Scrapping Article 370
- 'He Speaks Very Good English...': Prez Trump Shares Light Moment With PM Modi -- Video
- This Fashion Institute 'Stole' Delhi-Based Institute's Name, Appointed Manish Malhotra As Brand Ambassador
- Sindhu To Receive Cash Reward For Stellar Showing At Badminton Worlds
- Hosts Must Take Inspiration From Stokes - Root