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Letters to the Editor: December 31, 2018

Ring out the old, Ring in the new

Yet another year is coming to an end. In many places around the world, New Year’s celebrations begin on December 31 and continue until wee hours of January 1. Before we ring in 2019, let’s get some facts about New Year’s Day.

New Year wasn’t always celebrated on January 1. The earliest New Year festivities date back about 4,000 years ago. At that time, the people of ancient Babylon began their New Year in March. They would have an 11-day festival to celebrate the beginning of spring and the fact that crops were being planted for the coming year.

The calendar that we use today, which is known as the Gregorian calendar, was introduced 437 years ago by Pope Gregory XIII in the year, 1582. He declared once and for all that January 1 should be New Year’s Day. And since that time, people have been celebrating New Year’s Day on January 1.

Many of us make resolutions for the coming year. We promise ourselves that we’ll do something differently or better after January 1, whether it is quitting a bad habit or getting better grades in school. But where did we get this idea of making resolutions for the New Year?  It is believed that the ancient Babylonians were the first ones to make New Year’s resolutions. They made promises to begin the year off right and to earn the approval of their gods.

On New Year’s Eve, in some places, a figure resembling an old man is made. The figure signifies all that should be dispensed with, such as evil thoughts, bad behaviour, and so on. The figure stands on a road or in lanes and passersby often drop money into the box that is kept beside it. The effigy is set on fire at the stroke of midnight. The burning of the effigy signifies the end of the old year and the beginning of a new one. The money collected is used for partying by the people who have made the effigy. Most of us have forgotten that the New Year is not only a time for revelry but also for reflection.

Everybody looks forward to begin a new year with great fun and enjoyment and wish that the year ahead brings them in, all goods. I too celebrate this great day with all the blast that I can.

Jubel D’Cruz

 

Welcome 2019 with warmth!

Wishing the house of NBC, its lovable Directors, the very charming Editor-in-Chief Vaidehi Taman and the dedicated staff of Afternoon Voice, and the readers — a Merry Christmas and a promising and prosperous New Year 2019.

NBC propagates hard work, happy face, good manners and discipline, good health and beauty. All things and actions promoting positivity are well supported by them. They spurr the youth to excel and enjoy life fully.

Christmas is the time to give and share. Sharing your love and confessing your wrongdoings the values should be cherished by all in the coming years. Amen!

Mahendra Singh

 

2019 promises to be interesting!

2018 was a mixed bag for our country with ‘Hits and Misses’. Kerala flood disaster that killed many innocent lives and caused destruction valued in thousands of crores was the saddest moment that the country witnessed in the recent times. The entire scenic beauty of the state was ransacked and floods as well as Tsunamis which we witness today are results of our selfish actions of tampering with the environment. The Varanasi bridge collapse which killed several lives and the Punjab train tragedy which resulted in many lives being lost were other events that shocked the nation.

The ban on Triple Talaq by SC was and scrapping of section 377 which uplifted gay rights to marry among same gender were some of the happiest moments of 2018. Hima Das won India its first Gold ever in an international track event which was followed by Mary Kom who won her 6th World Championships Gold which brought cheer to a nation that is crazy about cricket.

Health is the real wealth and here is wishing all my fellow readers and everybody at Afternoon Voice a Very healthy and Prosperous New Year. World Cup in 2019 would be keenly watched and hope India emerges victorious as we have the ammunition to beat the best. Big Parliamentary elections await in 2019 and may the deserving candidates win. Indian economy promises better things ahead and may next year prove profitable for all.

Afternoon Voice ends the year with a Best Editor Award in print for Vaidehi Taman and here is wishing many more laurels and accolades to the most honest print publication in town!

SN Kabra

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(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)
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