Memos from Asia

India’s Festivals During The COVID-19 Pandemic

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India is a country of festivals. Whether it’s the Indian Summer or Monsoon (the rainy season), festival season is always on. You can expect at least one festival every month in India.

Now, as the Covid-19 spreads like wildfire in India, Indian Festivals are becoming a bit dull and quiet.

A Dull Celebration

Rakshabandhan, celebrated in India as a festival denoting brother-sister love and relationship. Sister tie Rakhi as symbol of intense love for her brother

On Monday, Indians celebrated Rakshabandhan, one of the biggest festivals in India.

Celebrated by Hindus, Jains, and Sikhs, Rakshabandhan isn’t limited to one religion or region. It won’t be a surprise if you find Christians and Muslims celebrating Rakhi, as it’s known in northern states.

Rakshabandhan is all about the bond between sisters and brothers. On the day of Rakshabandhan, sisters tie Rakhi, a fancy string (like a bracelet) on their brothers’ wrists. In olden times, it was symbolic of a brother’s duty to protect his sister, and the name literally means ‘the bond of protection.’

Today, Rakshabandhan is more about the love between siblings, and people find new ways of showing it every year.

Still, the colorful clothes and mouth-watering sweets are just as big parts of celebrations as before. The Pandemic affected this year’s celebrations as people stayed home and avoided traveling.

Artists were ready with their art to show the situation and the festival is meeting each other.

A post from Instagram shows how masks are the new bonds of protection that need to be tied amid the pandemic.

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Change the perspective! #rakshabandhan2020

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The Biggest Festivals Are Close

Some of the biggest festivals like Janmashtami, Navratri, Ganesh Puja, and Diwali are around the corner.

Celebrations of these festivals usually see huge crowd gatherings. Some local governments and authorities have disallowed public celebrations for Janmashtami, and the same might follow for other festivals.

Indian festivals are great refreshers for people, but many industries also rely on them. During festivals, people spend a huge amount of money in India. Many consider festivals the best time to buy new vehicles, property, and equipment.

The festival related businesses have been hit hard. Rakshabandhan saw many small sellers facing low sales. As the coronavirus spread shows no signs of slowing down, the slump in sales might continue even during Diwali, the festival of light, in November.

Indians are facing difficult times right now, and festivals might appear less cheerful due to fo that.

But, the celebrations always bring a little hope to Indians and offer an escape from the normal routines. Indians can be expected to enjoy as much as they can at home, and social media will always be there to share these festivities with everyone.

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