Greeting the people on Christmas, Prime Minister Narendra Modi sought to recall the philosophy of Jesus Christ towards humanity.
“Christmas greetings to everyone! We recall the life and noble teachings of Jesus Christ, which placed topmost emphasis on service, kindness and humility. May everyone be healthy and prosperous. May there be harmony all around,” he tweeted.
Midnight masses were held in churches across Goa, Maharashtra, Himachal Pradesh, Puducherry, West Bengal, Karnataka and other states. But the implementation of COVID protocols have been maintained in full swing.
Christmas, like every year, came with the message of spreading peace, love and prosperity, people exchanged gifts, sang carols and got together to honour the festive spirit. But the pandemic overshadowed the festive spirit with a rising number of Omicron cases across the world and righter restrictions being put in place.
While Delhi has allowed places of worship to remain open, the authorities have been instructed to ensure that no cultural events or gatherings for the purpose of Christmas celebrations should take place in the city. Restaurants, bars and auditoriums have been allowed to function at 50 percent capacity while putting a cap of 200 people in marriages. Haryana has also tightened its social gathering regulations on Christmas.
The Maharashtra government has directed that groups of more than five will not be allowed between 9pm and 6am. Restaurants, gyms, spas, cinemas and theatres will have to operate at 50 percent capacity attendance.
In Karnataka, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said restrictions would be in place from December 30 to January 2. He added that there won’t be any public celebrations or events in the state. Alongside, clubs and restaurants will be allowed to function at only 50 percent capacity, with no permission granted to DJ events and new-year parties.Omicron has also substantially disrupted holiday travel. Tracking website Flightaware.com reported that more than 2,300 flights have been cancelled around the world on December 25, according to news agency AFP.