Diwali, one of India’s most popular celebrations, is right around the corner, so we’ve gotten into the spirit. From cleaning homes to shopping for new clothes, through taking a walk through the much-anticipated brightly illuminated and bustling streets to popping crackers! Diwali is observed in a variety of ways across India and even internationally. Diwali is celebrated in a variety of ways by people from various communities and areas.
Diwali is also observed in other places of the world where Hindus have a significant population. Diwali is a national holiday in numerous nations, including Malaysia, Nepal, Singapore, and Sri Lanka. These countries are almost as enthusiastic about the occasion as India is. Hundreds of thousands of people have gone to see the Diwali fireworks displays. Celebrations may feature millions of lights in homes, fireworks, gift-giving as well as spiritual rites, feasts, much more, according on the locale. Of course, this year will be unique, with a greater emphasis on preserving social distance and remaining indoors.
Here are a few countries that celebrate Diwali with the same zeal as Indians, but with a few differences in their festivities.
Views of magnificently decorated residences and the rich, musky scent of incense sticks floating through the air can be appreciated on this national holiday. During Diwali, take a stroll through the city’s “Little India,” which includes bazaars, exhibitions, and rangoli art. The attractiveness is enhanced with open-air concerts and colourful lighting. The one-stop destination for new outfits for the festive season is Tekka Market in Little India. This year, Little India in Singapore is planning a virtual Diwali celebration.
If you visit Dubai during Diwali, you will undoubtedly have the time of your life. Dubai’s Diwali celebrations last five days, and the city’s shops are packed with visitors wanting to acquire gold. Decorations as well as traditional delicacies are sold at fairs staged at various malls and hotels, adding to the festival’s excitement. Special concerts, light shows, and magnificent rangoli art exhibits are featured at Bollywood Parks, a resort inspired by the thriving film industry.
The land down under will not disappoint you! In Melbourne as well as Brisbane, Diwali is enjoyed with a great display of fireworks, dance performances, including live entertainment, bringing together people of Indian descent and locals. The Diwali celebrations at Federation Square in Melbourne are believed to be the country’s largest and grandest.
Although the United States appears to be halfway across the world, it is considerably closer than you might believe. The festival of lights is also being celebrated in the western world. Diwali became an official holiday in 2003, and the celebrations have only grown since then. The Indian communities in the country, which are brimming with immigrant Asians, celebrate the occasion with zeal. Priests hold prayers as well as a community dinner in Hindu temples. Diwali parades are held in some of the larger cities.
This multi-ethnic as well as multi-lingual country tucked in the Foothills of the Himalayas is the world’s only Hindu kingdom. So, it’s no wonder that Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity, is honored on Diwali, also known as Tihar or Swanti. Each of the five days is significant in its own way. It is not uncommon to provide nice meals for animals such as cows and dogs here. In Nepal, Diwali is also a time for the worship of dogs, even as country celebrates Kukur Tihar, a day devoted to the devotion as well as appreciation of dogs. As a gesture of respect for their loyalty to humans, they will be dressed in flower garlands as well as given a tilak on the head. Nepal will celebrate Kukur Tihar with the same zeal this year.
Diwali is widely celebrated on the Indonesian island of Bali, where Indians make up the majority of the population. People in Bali celebrate Diwali by buying for crackers, clothes, as well as sweets, meeting family and friends, launching floating lights, as well as executing numerous Indian-style rituals. They also have a celebration called Galungan, which commemorates the period when ancestor spirits come to visit the Earth.
Even Britain’s cold, rainy, and windy climate cannot dampen Indians’ spirits over the Diwali season! As the second most populous ethnic group in England, Indians make the most out of Diwali as a method of reuniting with their roots. The Golden Mile in the heart of Leicester, where LED performances are popular, hosts one of the largest events. To connect closer to home as well as enjoy Diwali, people decorate their homes with diyas and fairy lights and exchange presents with one another.
With at least one million Indian immigrants, the city celebrates a number of Indian festivities, notably Diwali. Clay lamps are lit and communities enjoy in Indian Traditional sweet and savory foods, dress up in their best attire, and socialize with loved ones over the course of two days. Many people are avoiding eating non-vegetarian food, yet others enjoy a tasty South African braai. In Johannesburg, there is halaal food, flea markets, henna artists, fireworks, and children’s entertainment.
Diwali is a national holiday in Malaysia. ‘Open houses’ are celebrated on this day, where Hindu Malaysians welcome Malaysians of all races as well as beliefs to their homes for a dinner.
As we enter the winter season, India’s most important event shines brightly with a celebration of light triumphing over darkness. Join us on a global tour of Diwali by lighting a candle. Rangoli art, which involves creating beautiful patterns on the ground using colored powder, flower petals, or other materials, is another traditional component of Diwali, in addition to lighting lamps and fireworks.
- AMRITA TIWARI