Braving the difficulties and limitations due to Covid-19, Kerala Tourism organized virtual Onam celebrations this year by showcasing traditional art forms across media platforms from August 19 to 23.
Inaugurating the celebrations, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the government has initiated a series of measures to resume the pandemic-hit tourism activities in a safe and risk-free manner.
Stating that the tourism sector of Kerala has shown tremendous resilience by outliving back-to-back crises since 2016, the Chief Minister said, “as long as the Covid-19 pandemic prevails, we have to live with that and develop tourism along with it.”
“We have put arrangements in place for the revival of tourism in a safe and risk-free manner, where vaccinated people will receive vaccinated tourists. We have also made serious efforts to keep tourism destinations pollution-free, which have yielded good results,” he said.
“Apart from the alluring natural beauty, Kerala enjoys a reputation as a safe and strife-free place to visit. The hospitality of the people is also globally appreciated. All these will help the state in regaining its position as a prime tourism destination,” the Chief Minister said.
The Tourism Minister Mr. P. A. Mohammed Riyas, who presided over the online function, said Kerala Tourism has been conducting Onam celebrations for more than three decades. “Onam celebrations are conducted not only to generate festive mood among the public and make the commercial business active but also to provide a source of income for thousands of artistes,” he noted.
Additional Chief Secretary (Tourism) Dr. V. Venu delivered the welcome address and Kerala Tourism Director Mr. V. R. Krishna Teja proposed a vote of thanks.
The festival was live-streamed on television channels and social media platforms from 6:30 am to 8 pm. As for performing arts, 65 video clips of performances of local artistes in different art forms, each with 15-minute duration, were streamed.
The art forms that featured in the programme included Vilpattu, Nangiarkoothu, Pakkanar Thullal, Othara Padayani, Garudan Thookkam, Arjuna Nritham, Margam Kali, Aranyam Mannan Koothu, Sopana Sangeetham, Kudukka Veena, Seethankan Thullal, Kanyarkali, Arbana Muttu, Korambakkali, Kotha Mooriyattam Alamikkali and Yakshagana.
To have a preview of the art forms showcased as part of Virtual Onam, check the following playlist:
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