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Rashtrapati Bhavan : 24.12.2012

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee today greeted fellow citizens on the auspicious occasion of Christmas, which will be celebrated tomorrow.

In a message, the President said, "On the occasion of Christmas, I convey my greetings to all and wish everyone a blessed Christmas and a happy New Year.

May the Christmas bells dispel hatred and violence. As the world lights candles for Christmas this year, may the spirit of caring and sharing pervade our beings.

Let us renew in our minds and hearts the teachings of love and compassion of Jesus Christ and recall his sacrifice for humanity.

We mark Christmas at a time when the nation is joined in anguish and distress over the recent horrific attack on a young girl in New Delhi.

I laud the courage and tenacity of this young lady and her family. On this Christmas day, let us join in prayer for the full and speedy recovery of this strong and courageous girl.

Let us resolve to redouble our efforts for the protection of women and their welfare. Let us strive to ensure that women feel safe and secure at all times in our country".

This release issued at 1730 hrs