GUWAHATI: US President Joe Biden extended a greeting to the South Asian and Southeast Asian communities who are celebrating indigenous festivals like Rongali Bihu, Vaisakhi, Navratri, and Songkran.
Taking to his official Facebook page Biden wrote, "Jill and I send our warmest wishes to the many South Asian and Southeast Asian communities celebrating Vaisakhi, Navratri, and the incoming New Year across the country this week. Happy Aluth Avurudda, Happy Bihu, Happy Cheti Chand, Happy Gudi Padwa, Happy Khmer New Year, Happy Navreh, Happy Pohela Boishakh, Happy Pana Sankranti, Happy Pi Mai, Happy Puthandu, Happy Rongali Bihu, Happy Songkran, Happy Tamil New Year, Happy Ugadi, and Happy Vishu! In this season of hope, we are wishing this New Year brings you and your families prosperity and light".
It is to be mentioned here that, in the middle of the second wave of the COVID pandemic, states in India are celebrating the New Year according to the Hindu and Sikh Calendars. Communities across India were seen celebrating the onset of Spring and indulging in festivities and merrymaking to herald the New Year known by different names in the different states.
In Assam too people are celebrating Rongali or Bohag Bihu amid SOPs issued by the state government. Last year the Covid situation in the state had put a halt to all the cultural events including Bihu celebrations. As per the SOP issued on Friday, this time the organizers of the cultural programmes, an important part of the Rongali Bihu celebrations, have to seek permission from the local authorities and mention how many people are taking part. All the organizers are to get themselves tested for COVID along with the volunteers.
Further, with the rise of the active cases in Kerala the famous Sreekrishna Temple, Guruvayur was seen sans celebrations on Vishu, the harvest festival of Kerala. The Kerala government had issued new restrictions in the state to battle COVID.
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