Goa carnival begins March 5 (Lead)

February 11th, 2011 - 8:53 pm ICT by IANS  

Panaji, Feb 11 (IANS) Goa’s four-day carnival fiesta, which will see thousands taking to the streets to the tune of music, will kick off March 5, Panaji Mayor Carolina Po announced Friday. Po said a committee had been set up to organise the festival.

“Preparations are in full swing. Various cultural programmes are being chalked out. The famous King Momo’s Parade will be held March 5 in Panaji with great pomp and fervour,” Po said.

Carnival processions, symbolic of Goa’s colonial Portuguese legacy, are held every year before the holy season of Lent.

Lent is the 40-day period starting from Ash Wednesday and ending with Easter Sunday, during which many Christians observe fasting, repentance and moderation in an effort at spiritual renewal.

The festival, which involves a public celebration in the form of long continuous parades of gaily coloured floats, with dancers, is led by King Momo or king of the carnival.

King Momo is usually a locally chosen dignitary who is given a key to the city.

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