Prez cancels New Year celebrations

In the backdrop of the gangrape of a girl here, President Pranab Mukherjee has decided to cancel all New Year celebrations and appealed to the people not come to greet him at ‘Rashtrapati Nilayam’ in Hyderabad, one of his two official retreats.

“In view of the recent tragic event leading to the loss of a young girl, the President has decided not to take part in any celebration of the New year. The President has also decided not to receive any greetings in person.

“The President has, however, conveyed his best wishes to people for a prosperous and protective New Year ahead. He has urged all citizens to maintain peace, face challenges and strive towards building a strong nation,” President’s Press Secretary Venu Rajamony said here.

The President, who was in Mumbai yesterday, had cancelled all celebration programmes including the ‘At Home’ function being hosted by Maharashtra Governor K S Sankaranarayanan.
The President had expressed his shock over the brutal rape of 23-year-old girl in the national capital on December 16. The victim eventually died at Singapore on Friday morning.