The Islamic Cham people in the central province of Binh Thuan officially launched a month-long festival to welcome their Ramuwan (New Year) festival on July 7.

On this occasion, which is the biggest festival of the Islamic community in the province, all Islamic Cham families gather to pay respect to their ancestors and pray for happiness, bumper crops and peace.

The festival opened with the ritual of paying tribute to ancestors at their graves and then each family holds ceremonies at home in commemoration of their ancestors.

In recent years, the festival has attracted lots of tourists and researchers both at home and abroad who want to explore the special cultural characteristics of the Islamic Cham community in Binh Thuan.

On the occasion, the provincial People’s Committee has instructed cities and districts as well as relevant ministries and agencies to create favourable conditions for the organisation of the festival.

Provincial leaders visit Islamic Cham dignitaries at temples and mosques in the province to extend their New Year greetings.

Cultural and sporting activities are also held within the framework of the festival.

Binh Thuan province is home to 41,000 Cham ethnic people, of whom 15,000 are Muslims and the remaining are Brahmins.-VNA