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Hindu festival celebrated by the people of Kerala

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Ankita Hari.

ONAM is a Hindu festival celebrated by the people of Kerala and on Saturday the local Ballarat community not only celebrated the harvest festival but also launched the Ballarat Malayalee Association. St Patrick’s Cathedral hall was a kaleidoscope of colour and sound as young and old celebrated the annual festival. Ballarat Malayalee Association General Secretary Sherly Saju said the Onam is one of the most important festivals in Kerala (South India) and this year’s event was attended by Ballarat MP Catherine King. “We celebrate this festival every September and it is celebrated by all the communities in Kerala, not just the Hindu’s,” Ms Saju said. “We also launched our association on Saturday. We have around 75 Malayalee families in Ballarat. “Our association is mainly giving back to the local community, however we can support it, and the other thing is to pass on our tradition and culture to our coming generation.” Onam was celebrated on Saturday through a number of cultural activities. “The main attraction was the Thiruvathirakali, a dance performed by females,” Ms Saju added. “Another attraction was a rope pulling by two groups of people (similar to a tug of war).”