Photo Story | How Kolkata Rings in the Chinese New Year

Fireworks, myths and ritualistic dances are part of the traditional festivities in the city.

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Lion dancers perform cai qing, which translates to “plucking the greens.” During the performance, the masked beast strives to snatch lettuce leaves, along with red envelopes hung outside homes and shops. Spitting out the leaves, the animal keeps the money while offering blessings in return. Photo By: Rana Pandey

Dragon floats parade through the streets. Tiretti Bazaar and Tangra—Kolkata’s twin China towns with predominant Chinese settlements— reverberate with fireworks. Red tinted lanterns and strings of chilli pepper are hung outside homes to ward off evil. Wardrobes are awash in crimson. The mood is set to ring in the Chinese New Year. Celebrated with great pomp and pride worldwide, it is an affair to remember here too. This year, February 5 marks the start of the new lunar calendar and the Year of the Pig. A photographer chronicles both the festivities and behind-the-scenes action in the city.

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A D V E R T I S E M E N T

A D V E R T I S E M E N T

A D V E R T I S E M E N T

  • Pooja Naik is Senior Sub-Editor at National Geographic Traveller India. She likes to take long leisurely walks with both hands in her pocket; channeling her inner Gil Pender at Marine Drive since Paris is a continent away.

  • Rana Pandey is a practicing visual storyteller from Kolkata. Photography, for him, is a democratic medium, and he uses his lens as a tool to understand the world.

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