Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, Kerala's harvest festival Onam which began on the 22nd of August, feels different this year, with celebrations restricted to the homes.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has also urged people to avoid large social gatherings and stay home on Onam.
Under normal circumstances, the much waited 10-day long festival is marked with grand celebrations.
One of the greatest attractions of the festival is the Onam Sadhya, which is a huge spread of 26 vegetarian dishes, served on the 10th day of the festival. This feast is unlike any other! There is a particular order in which the food is served on the banana leaf as people sit cross-legged on a mat laid on the floor to eat. Some of the items served include papad, banana wafer, avial and kuttu curry.
Exquisite flower carpets called 'Pookalam' is another popular Onam trait. This year, keeping in mind the risk of transmission of Covid-19, the chief minister urged people to use local flowers for the carpets and avoid transporting them from other states.