Though the tourism industry is still reeling under demonetisation aftermath, Goa is all set to usher in the Christmas festivities with all churches in the coastal state planning mid-night mass on Saturday. The usual hustle and bustle in the markets across the state remained unaffected despite demonetisation, as people were seen crowding the places to buy goodies and other decorative items required to deck up the house for Christmas.
“There is no much crowd in the tourism belt these days. Despite being Christmas weekend, the flow of tourists is very usual. The aftermath of demonetisation is still looming large over the tourism industry,” Domnic Pereira, who owns two guest houses one in Calangute and another at Baga told PTI.
Though the business remained low key in the coastal belt, it failed to dampen the spirit of Christmas in those areas. The market of Mapusa and Panaji was flooded with the people lining up for Christmas related purchases. ‘Made in China’ masks of Santa Clause and star lanterns donned the market of Panaji.
“There is no option for China made products. They are cheap and come in different varieties. We buy China products but that does not make us less patriotic. Give us an option and we will buy Swadeshi,” Mario Albuquerque, a teacher at local school, said. Albuqurque along with his wife was at Panaji market shopping for the Christmas.
“The schools are now having vacation so children are at home. They are busy preparing cribs,” he said. The state which was erstwhile Portuguese colony has 27 per cent Christian population which will be attending mid-night masses. The lanes and by lanes of the state are dotted with the Cribs, depicting Birth of Lord Jesus. ‘Live’ cribs are in fashion this year with youth trying their best to attract maximum eyeballs for their creation.