There are so many festivals celebrated by India from Holi, the festival of colour and Raksha Bandhan, the festival of siblings to Ganesh Chaturthi and Durga Puja. But the most-awaited, the most commemorated festival of India, Diwali- the festival of Lights, is almost upon us! It’s a five-day festival-and these five days are dedicated to cleaning households, decorating them with diyas and rangolis, exchanging gifts and sweets amongst neighbours, relatives and friends and of course bursting crackers. It’s the biggest and brightest national holiday of India. But did your kids know all about Diwali and why it’s celebrated? Get your kids to know all about this festival, why it’s celebrated, how is it celebrated and some super interesting facts about it! So keep scrolling for more!
The Story behind celebrating Diwali?
Diwali is celebrated to welcome Lord Rama, his wife Sita and his brother Laxman, who come back to Ayodha after 14 years of exile in the jungle! During this time, the demon king Raavan kidnaps Sita and holds her captive until Lord Ram defeats him with the help of Hanuman, the commander of the monkey army. People light their houses to celebrate his victory over evil (light over darkness).
How is Diwali celebrated in India?
DAY ONE: People clean their homes and celebrate ‘Dhanteras’. They shop for gold or kitchen utensils to help bring good fortune.
DAY TWO: People decorate their homes with clay diyas and rangoli (design patterns) on the floor using coloured powders or sand.
DAY THREE: On the main day of the festival, families gather together for puja or prayer, to Goddess Lakshmi, followed by feasts and fireworks.
DAY FOUR: People celebrate Govardhan Puja. It’s a day to honour Lord Krishna.
DAY FIVE: This festival ends with a celebration just like Raksha Bandhan, it’s a celebration of the bond between brothers and sisters.
Which city is famous for Diwali and how is it celebrated in different parts of India?
Diwali is celebrated in every corner of India!
As Uttar Pradesh is the birthplace of Lord Rama, it is a treat to the eye to be here when it’s celebrated! The celebration starts with various aartis at the river Ganga. Priests come together and chant hymns and thousands of oil-lit diyas float over the Ganges! It is a site that cannot be missed!
The people of Punjab don’t celebrate Diwali but they celebrate Bandi Chhor Diwas that falls on the same day! It marks the arrival of winter in the state. Farmers start sowing seeds during this time! The famous Golden Temple is light up during this time and langars are set up for everyone who come to pray here!
Diwali coincides with Kali Puja in West Bengal. There are lots of pandals set up during this festival and people go pandal hopping across Kolkata.
The celebration spans across the world. It’s celebrated in Fiji, Guyana, Mauritius, Pakistan, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Nepal to name a few. The city of Leicester in the UK is host to the world’s biggest Diwali celebration outside of India.
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