Diwali is a Hindu festival celebrated on a new moon night sometime in October or November. It is known as the ‘Festival of Lights’ which people celebrate by filling the night sky with fireworks and arranging tea lights around the house. Diwali one of the biggest festivals in India, if not the biggest. The night sky is filled with fireworks and homes are adorn with tea lights and candles. We looked into how Diwali is celebrated across the world other than India including our very own Leicester:
Leicester – One of the main attractions in Leicester is Belgrave Road, better known as the Golden Mile. The Golden Mile is covered in lights which are turned on two weeks prior to Diwali Day and stay on throughout. There are many stalls where you are able to buy different Indian sweets and savouries made by local shops. As part of the celebrations, there is a large fireworks display that can be seen along the whole of Belgrave Road and neighbouring streets.
Nepal – Diwali is known as Tihar in Nepal which is celebrated to honour the Goddess Lakshmi and Ganesh. The festivals, however, last for 5 days, each with their own importance. The first day is devoted to cows, who are fed and prayed too. On day two dogs are fed special meals and on the third-day lamps and lanterns to signify the return of Ram. The fourth day is dedicated to Yama who is the lord of death and the final day, known as Bhai Dooj, celebrates brothers and sisters.
Thailand – Loi Krathrog, which means ‘to float a basket’ is the Diwali name in Thailand. Loi Krathong is celebrated on the full moon day in the twelfth month of the Thai calendar. It is celebrated with beautiful fireworks, banana leaf lamps, rice paper hot air balloons and candles are floated in all bodies.
Sri Lanka – Deepawali is one of the most celebrated festivals in Sri Lanka much like India. It has the same associated as Indian traditions, but is celebrated for five days by the Hindu Tamilians. There are multiple spiritual rituals and traditions such as distributing sweets and savouries among family and friends, as well as lighting the oil lamps and letting off fireworks.
There are many other countries that celebrate Diwali such as Guyana, South Africa and also Fiji where it is a public holiday. Diwali 2017 is approaching soon and we would like to wish everyone a very Happy Diwali and a Prosperous New Year from the entire CJC Interiors team!