NEW DELHI, Dec 30: India's capital New Delhi will shun New Year celebrations, with elite hotels and clubs on Thursday cancelling festivities after the devastation caused by a massive tsunami across the Indian Ocean.

New Delhi's presidential palace has set the example by deciding not to illuminate the historical building for the first time in several years since 1947. "Unlike in the previous years, President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam will not receive presidential palace employees or visitors to exchange New Year greetings on that day," his office said.

One of the biggest dance parties being planned in New Delhi's Habitat Centre with live music from popular band Euphoria has been cancelled to mourn the thousands of people who died in the disaster.

"With so many lives lost in the tsunami waves and so much tragedy in the lives of so many people, we felt it would be morally incorrect for us to celebrate," said Pramuch Goyal, spokesman for Habitat World. -AFP

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