Mar 17, 2020, 8:18 PM
Journalist ID: 1114
News Code: 83716265
1 Persons


Chaharshanbeh Suri, an ancient festival of fire to welcome Nowruz

Tehran, March 16, IRNA – Chaharshanbeh Suri, a prelude to the New Year in Iran, is an ancient festival observed on the eve of the last Wednesday before Nowruz.

The festival is usually celebrated in the evening by performing rituals such as jumping over bonfires and lighting off firecrackers and fireworks.

Iranians sing the poetic line "my yellow is yours, your red is mine" to the fire during the festival, asking the fire to take away ill-health and problems and replace them with warmth, health, and energy.  

Each year, with approach of Nowruz, Iranians go to shopping every day to buy new clothing to celebrate Nowruz.

During Nowruz, which marks the beginning of spring, Iranians also make short visits to the houses of their relatives and friends, elderly people in particular.

But everything is different this year. Few days left to the Iranian New Year Nowruz holidays, national campaign against corona epidemic will certainly overshadow observing the ancient festivities to mark spring equinox.

Coronavirus outbreak has killed at least 724 people in the country so far with 13,938 others being infected by the virus.  

Officials are urging people to stay at their homes and avoid public gatherings. People cannot easily go shopping as they did in previous years before Nowruz holidays. They only go out when they really need.

Most of the shopkeepers have voluntarily shut down their shops or have been forced to do so.

This year, the health officials have advised Iranians not to go to the houses of their relatives and friends in order to prevent the spread of the virus. Especially it is mostly recommended not to go to visit the elders as the new coronavirus is a serious threat to the elderly.

The officials are seriously asking people not to travel to other cities as most of the cities have been affected by the virus and traveling from one city to another can help carry the virus to different people. In addition, the hotels and restaurants are shut down in many tourist destinations and so it is not possible to travel to such places. 

Iranian Minister of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts in separate letters to the related officials announced last week that all museums will be closed during the Iranian New Year’s Eve ‘Nowruz’.

Alireza Zali, the head of the headquarters for the management of operations against coronavirus in Tehran said that most of those affected with the virus in Iran had no chronic diseases.

“Now we are examining whether we are facing a wild virus in Iran and Italy when compared to that affecting China and the rest of the Europe,” the official said.

Even the speech of the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei routinely held every year in the holy shrine of Imam Reza in Mashhad to mark the arrival of new Iranian year is called off due to health recommendations to prevent the outbreak of the coronavirus. 

Although the disease disturbs the Iranian New Year holiday this year, it’s much more important to protect the lives of the people, and Nowruz will be celebrated in the country for very many years in the future.


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