Christmas in India is celebrated by the Christian community across the country with pomp and gaiety. A public holiday is declared for Christmas. The festival is officially celebrated by the President of India at Rashtrapati Bhavan. The festival of Christmas has acquired a secular tinge. In several parts of India, it is joyfully celebrated by people of all religions and communities. People from all religions in the country unite with their Christian friends to celebrate the birth of Lord Jesus Christ.
The Ecstasy for Christmas
The celebrations begin a week prior to the festival. The ecstasy
for Christmas in India is marked by Christmas carols, cakes, candles
and the decoration of Christmas Tree. Special programs are organized
by Churches across the country, on Christmas Day, to mark the birth
of Jesus Christ. Beautifully decorated Christmas trees, balloons,
embellishments, stars, and images of Santa are a common market scene
during the festive season. Days before the festival, people get busy
in spring-cleaning to make their homes spick and span.
A variety of delicious Christmas cakes are prepared by ladies,
which is eagerly awaited by the entire family. Most educational
institutions in the country have a mid-academic year vacation which
is also termed as Christmas vacation. The vacation begins shortly
before Christmas and ends a few days after the New Year's Day.
School children actively participate in programs for the celebration
of the festival. Christian missionary schools across the country
organize plays depicting the birth of Lord Jesus Christ. Christmas
celebrations often get mixed with the celebrations to welcome the
Christmas across the Country
Customs for the celebration of Christmas in India are different for
different regions of the country. The rituals for Christmas
celebration are in contrast with those followed in South West. For
instance, Christians living in South India decorate banana or mango
trees instead of the traditional pine tree. People light clay
oil-burning lamps on the rooftops of their houses. In many other
parts of the country, people decorate the traditional Christmas tree
with toys, plastic fruits and balls.
It is an interesting fact that Hindus and Muslims form the majority
of India's population and only 3% of the total population of India
is actually Christian. Even then, Christmas is celebrated with a
large amount of fanfare in the secular nation.