Srinagar: With the spirit of Christmas in the air, the people of Jammu and Kashmir celebrated the festival today.
Christmas is celebrated as a commemoration of the birth of Jesus Christ universally by the Christian community.
The churches across the Valley were decorated with ribbons and lights yesterday to mark the celebrations.
Undeterred by freezing temperature, devotees joined the prayers in churches which were decorated for the occasion.
The main Christmas function was held at Maulana Azad Road, Lal Chowk in Srinagar where devotees joined the mass prayers.
Father Roy at the Holy Family Catholic Church on MA Road said, “The celebrations this year are more upbeat than the last year. Last year, the celebrations were low-key due to the unrest and were restricted to the spiritual part only. This year also we are not making it so big, but colourful celebrations are taking place.”
Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti felicitated people on Christmas and expressed hope that the holy occasion would be a sign of communal harmony, love for humanity and compassion for all across the world.
Governor NN Vohra and deputy chief minister Nirmal Singh also extended their Christmas greetings.
On Sunday, prayers were held at the Holy Family Catholic Church and All Saints’ Church in Srinagar, Saint Joseph’s Church in Baramulla district-the oldest Catholic Church in Jammu and Kashmir-and also at a church located in the tourist resort of Gulmarg.
Christmas is celebrated every year on December 25 and marks the birth of Jesus Christ. It is celebrated by all communities, both Christian, and others. Christmas is celebrated by singing carols and exchanging gifts, as it aims to spread the message of peace and prosperity.