Kerala Tourism’s Week-long Online Onam Celebrations to Begin on Saturday.

Kerala Tourism’s Week-long Online Onam Celebrations to Begin on Saturday.

The week-long virtual Onam celebrations kicks off tomorrow, using audio-visual and social media to instill a spirit of celebration aimed at offsetting the general slowdown amid Covid-19.

Chief Minister Shri Pinarayi Vijayan will inaugurate the celebrations, organized by the Department of Tourism, at an online event at 6 pm tomorrow. The opening ceremony will be attended by Tourism Minister Shri. P. A. Mohamed Riyas, Additional Chief Secretary (Tourism) Dr. V. Venu and Kerala Tourism Director Shri. V. R. Krishna Teja.

An international “Pookalam “competition where participants will vie with their floral carpet designs will be the highlight of the festival, which will also stream Kerala’s traditional performing arts. The celebrations are organized to counter a widespread livelihood loss owing to the pandemic during the past one-and-a-half years.

Participants can register at

The online festivities will help catalyse the economy, as the arrival of Onam typically heralds a new tourist season for the state.

Notwithstanding Covid-19, Kerala Tourism’s website continues to be a big bit by clocking more than 7.5 million visitors last year. The portal’s high popularity is the chief reason to host the Pookalam competition, allowing the participation of Malayalis across the world. Individuals, organisations/associations can vie for honours by arranging the flower carpet and uploading its image on to the website. The participants can also share the pictures over social media.

The contestants will be awarded first, second and third prizes in two categories: individual and organization/association. There will be separate judging panels for these segments. The winners will earn attractive prizes. Besides, there will be consolation prizes (20 in each category) and certificates of participation. Also, all participants (except those who win the 52 prizes mentioned above) will be given a special ‘Onam Gift’.

As for performing arts, 65 video clips of performances of local artistes in different art forms, each with 15 minute duration, will be streamed through the state’s audio-visual media channels and social-media platforms. The initiative seeks to rejuvenate artists sitting largely idle in Covid-19 times.