In 2004, a massive tsunami swept over vulnerable coastal areas of Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and nine other countries. Ever since survivors across the region hold ceremonies to mourn for those who lost their lives and pray for something like it to never happen again.
Here is a glimpse at how commemorations were held this year in Chennai.
People pray during a prayer ceremony for the victims of the 2004 tsunami on the 15th anniversary of the disaster, at Marina beach in Chennai, India, December 26, 2019.
Communities across Asia commemorated the more than 230,000 victims of the Indian Ocean tsunami, one of the world's most deadly disasters. Prayers were held to pay respects to those who lost their lives, both young and old.
Women scatter flower petals in the waters of the Bay of Bengal during a prayer ceremony for the victims of the 2004 tsunami.
Memorials were scheduled in the Indonesian province of Aceh, where entire villages were flattened and more than 125,000 people perished in the giant waves. Since then, the area has been largely rebuilt, with some 25,600 residential, commercial, government and school buildings constructed inside a high-risk zone, that had suffered virtually total devastation in 2004.
Women pour milk into the waters of the Bay of Bengal during a prayer ceremony for the victims of the 2004 tsunami..
In Thailand, where more than 5,300 people were killed, including tourists visiting resort islands in the Andaman Sea, government officials held a memorial ceremony and called for more awareness and preparedness for disasters.
The movie 'The Impossible' which released in 2012 was based on true stories of one such tourist family who were visiting Thailand at the time of the disaster.