SHILLONG, Dec 25 � Midnight services in churches across the State heralded the birth of Jesus Christ as tourists and locals joined in the festivities with religious fervour, mixed with merriment of exchanging greetings and gifts with friends and relatives.
Meghalaya�s capital city of Shillong was decked up for Christmas and the forthcoming New Year celebrations as government and private buildings as well as street corners were illuminated and decorated with Christmas trees, banners and festoons.
Special programmes including traditional Christmas carols and colourful processions rendered the air festive and solemn. Tourists flocked to this hill State to participate in the Christmas celebrations as well as to take a taste of the winter season.
Hectic last minute shopping and night-long concerts marked the Christmas Eve. Commercial hubs of the city like Police Bazar and Iewduh (Barabazar), one of the biggest markets in the North East, were crowded with people buying clothes, foodstuff and other Christmas items for the past one week.
Known for attractive illumination during Christmas and New Year, Garo Hills too is agog with festivity even as Tura town was illuminated with different coloured lights.
Unique to its tradition, almost every tree in Tura is decked up with lighting symbolising Christmas trees.
Meghalaya Governor RS Mooshahary wished people a joyful Christmas and hoped that the spirit and warmth of Christmas will bestow enduring peace and joy in life.
Chief Minister Mukul Sangma, on behalf of his Cabinet colleagues, also wished people a very happy Christmas.
Kohima: Faithfuls across Nagaland today celebrated Christmas with joy and religious fervour as bright sunshine enveloped the skyline since morning.
After attending midnight prayer services and mass, people in their best attires were seen congregating at the churches of different denominations since morning to celebrate the occasion.
People attended special morning services and prayers to seek peace, prosperity and brotherhood amidst festivity.
Governor Nikhil Kumar and Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio greeted the people on the occasion.
Itanagar: Christmas was celebrated with great fervour and gaiety in Arunachal Pradesh. Chief Minister Nabam Tuki participated in the celebration by attending the mass prayer at Christian Revival Church here and later attended the ceremony at Naharlagun Catholic Church, Pappu Nalah today.
In his festival message to the gathering, Tuki greeted all and asked them to spread the message of world peace, harmony and love. He also advocated for fostering the feeling of brotherhood among all communities irrespective of colour, creed, language and religion.