Source: Agencies 01 Jan 2016 13:30:22

New Delhi, January 1: In Goa, church bells and fire crackers mingled to welcome the New Year 2016. On the beaches, in traditional homes, on city streets and of course on Internet people greeted each other happy new year. Goa wears a festive look from Christmas itself.  

All the hotels and restaurants, public buildings and homes were decorated and the spirit of joy prevailed up to the last mid night when people bid adieu to 2015 and welcomed 2016.  
Traditional and up to date, serene and reveling, the visitors and Niz-Goenkars celebrated and partied. Popular beaches were overcrowded and rich and poor alike took memorable moments along when they left the sea shore after midnight up to the wee hours. Social networking groups on Internet showed tremendous activity during the late night.

The city of dreams Mumbai welcomed New Year in high spirit. Along with Mumbaikars, large number of tourists had gathered at various famous locations such as Marine drive, Gateway of India, all chowpati’s, famous hotels and other places to celebrate the New Years Eve. Mumbai police had made elaborate security arrangements to ensure safety and security.  

Traffic police had kept close watch to avoid drunk and drive cases. Central and Western railway made special arrangements for commuters to ensure safe journey. BEST had also operated special buses on this occasion. The city had experienced magnificent firework when the clock turned on to 12 at midnight. The cold waves had added cheer to the exciting ambience.

Delhiites celebrated New Year with great enthusiastically with thousands of people thronged restaurants, malls and multiplexes. Famous markets and party hotspots like Connaught Place, Saket Select City Walk, Nehru Place, Khan Market, Rajaouri Garden also witnessed huge number of people including children.

In view of security reasons, Delhi Metro was shut down its entry and exit points for the passengers after 9 PM at Rajiv Chowk station. However, interchange facilities between the Yellow and Blue lines was available. The security arrangements at major marketing hubs and crowded destinations across the city were also put in place with deployment of extra personnel to avoid untoward incidents. A traffic police official was also deployed at various places to check and take action against cases of drunken driving.

In Himachal Pradesh, the New Year 2016 was celebrated enthusiastically at different places including capital Shimla. The tourists were hoping snowfall but the weather remained dry.Shimla city was looking beautiful in colorful lights in the night.  

The tourists and local people gathered at historic Ridge Maidan cheered as the clock showed zero zero hours in the mid night. Everyone present there greeted and wished each other for better future.  

Meanwhile, special religious functions are underway at historical temples of Godess Durga in Kangra, Bilaspur and Una districts. People in large numbers are reaching these temples to take part in functions.

In the flood-hit Chennai, the New Year has been welcomed with great enthusiasm and new hopes, putting aside the memories of the recent deluge. People gathered in several thousands in the famous Marina Beach and exchanged their greetings at the break of the New Year. Places of worships had special prayers in which thousands of people participated.

The festive spirit in flood-hit Chennai was at its best during the birth of the New Year, with people thronging in several thousands in the famous Marina Beach and the Besant Nagar Eliot’s Beach as in the past.  

When the clock struck 12 at night, people exchanged hi-decibel greetings marking the resilience of the city that has come out of the dampened spirit due to the recent flood.  

The number of people at temples and churches offering special prayers were also as impressive as in the past, highlighting that the rain-ravaged city has embarked upon a new beginning with newer hopes.

However, Thiruvananthapuram witnessed less loud New Year celebrations this time and several city hotels hosted “non-alcoholic parties” with DJs trying to create some extra spirits. Compared to the past new years, this one was less ‘celebratory’ for many in the city owing to the closing of bars following a Government decision.

In Kochi, the Excise Department led “Vivala Vida”, a non-alcoholic new year eve celebration to sensitize the people on the ill effects of alcohol. Kovalam beach witnessed more tourist turn-out on the new year eve. In Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple, huge turn-out of pilgrims is reported on the New Year Day.