Mumbai: Christmas was celebrated with festive zest and fervour Tuesday in India's financial and entertainment capital Mumbai. Mumbaikars prayed in churches and decorated their houses with cribs, neon lights and bright stars.

The city's nearly 12 lakh Christians spent the day meeting friends and relatives and hosting parties.  Shops sold new concepts for cakes and chocolates. Cakes featuring Christmas trees and Santa were a major hit.
Many bakers even made 3D cakes on order. "We have an eco-friendly crib made out of only paper," said Reuben D'souza, a resident of suburban Bandra in northwest Mumbai.

Malls in the city organised special programmes. I. C. Colony in the northwest suburb of Borivli brought in Christmas Monday night by putting up cribs at several places and a live enactment of Jesus' birth in Bethlehem.

Martin Cardoz, a resident who organised the skit, said: "This year we decided to bring in Christmas by enacting the birth of Jesus."Christian-dominated areas of Colaba, Byculla, Mazgaon, Mahim, Bandra, Malvani, Orlem, Borivli and Bhayander wore a festive look. Families greeted each other and exchanged goodies after the midnight mass Monday.

Several balls were organised. Men in their best suits and women in shimmering dresses danced to the tunes of old and new songs. "I am looking forward to dancing till late night," said Praisy Abraham from Andheri. "A few friends and relatives worked hard to make this home-party a success," she added.


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