- Holidays and Celebrations
15 Countries that Celebrate Diwali Festival of Lights
Diwali the festival of Light is precisely celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and Buddhist across the world to mark the victory of good over evil, light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance and hope over despair. Diwali festival is celebrated in many countries where Indian and Hindus have good presence and native people also love to join and celebrate the celebration of joy and happiness. There are more than fifteen countries where people celebrate Diwali.
Diwali is a most precious festival of Hindus in India, celebrated every year in the month of October-November. It’s a nationwide celebration and government holiday. People celebrate it as a symbol of victory of god over evil, light over darkness and knowledge over illiteracy. The festival is also known as Deepawali, Sipawal and Festival of lights.
The celebration includes firework, lighting the house with oil field lams (called Diyas), distributing sweets, praying of Goddess Laxmi and Ganesh and distributing sweets among friends, neighbors and relatives. And the delicious foods are cooked and new garments are worn and in many part of India (Gujrat, Maharastra etc.) traditional dancing and music follow to mark the festival.
Diwali in Varanasi, India
Diwali celebration has exceptional allure in Nepal, celebrated for five days with Diwali, but it’s known as Tihar festival. Diwali in Nepal is celebrated by ancient traditional Hindu rituals. People enlighten their houses, making exciting Rangoli of Garland, do the firework and also adore their ancient human companions like a crow, cow, dog and do the prayers of Gowardhan and Goddess Laxmi.
3. Sri Lanka
Diwali is the most illustrious festival in Sri Lanka, they celebrate Diwali for five days like India and Nepal. It's a national holiday in Sri Lanka and the native Sri Lankan and Tamil people both celebrate Diwali by enlightening their houses and making Rangoli at private and public places, visiting friends and relatives, make prayer and distribute sweets.
Myanmar is basically a Buddhist country that is also known as Burma, but their culture is influenced by neighbor countries like India, China and Thailand. Sharing the eastern border of India, Myanmar has a good number of Hindu population. Burmese cosmology, myths and dress are also influenced by India and Hinduism. They wear lungi or longyi (a skirt worn by both men and women) and celebrate many Indian festivals. Diwali celebration is very popular and celebrated all over the country.
People celebrate it by worshiping God. Enlighten their houses by candles, lights, traditional lamps and illuminating the housed and public properties.
Bhutan is the Buddhists kingdom in the lap of Himalaya and one of the happiest countries in the world. The boundaries of Bhutan are adjacent to India and people from both the countries are influenced by the customs of each other and people in Bhutan also celebrate the Hindu festivals. Many Bhutanese people celebrate Diwali. They celebrate it by enlightening their houses, worshiping God, exchanging sweets and visiting friends and neighbors' houses.
Diwali is a national Holiday in Fiji, celebrated all over the country people enjoys its joyful and cultural aspects. But the Hindus residing in this country celebrate with the traditional good will and customs. They invite neighbors to their home and share in sweets, home cooked Indian foods and gifts of love. Diwali in Fiji is also a gathering in a spirit of communal harmony.
Mauritius has good Indian residents who follow Hinduism and celebrates all the Hindu festivals by traditional Hindu rituals. The Diwali celebration in Mauritius is most prevalent and ancient tradition, celebrated to mark the victory of Lord Rama over evil king Ravana that signify the victory of good over bad. The celebration starts since morning with worship of goddess Laxmi and at evening they do the firework and distribute the sweets.
The most of the population in Indonesia are Muslims and they follow Islam and do not celebrate Diwali as a religious festival, they celebrate it as a gratifying and striking festival of lights. But the Hindus from Indonesia (mainly located in Bali) have religious trusts to celebrate Diwali. They celebrate is by the Indian Hindu traditions, they clean and enlighten the house and public places, wear new clothes, worship the Goddess Laxmi and Lord Ganesha and exchange the sweets among friends, relatives and neighbors.
Mainly the Sikhs and Hindus are celebrating Diwali festival in Pakistan. Earlier it was a national celebration in Pakistan, but later when military ruler Zia-UL-Haq adopted the policy of “Islamisation”, he canceled the holidays for Holi and Diwali. Again on 5th Nov, 2010 Diwali celebration was avowed an optional holiday in Pakistan and since Nov. 2016, Diwali has been declared a National Holiday in Pakistan. Even this pronouncement was made to conciliate religious minorities.
The Singapore has a large percentage of the Indian Hindus and around 20 Hindu Temples in Singapore. Hindus celebrate Diwali in Singapore by enlightening their houses and decorating with garland and prayer in temples. The Serangoon road is known as Mini India, where thousands of people celebrated Diwali together. The natives from other religions also join the festival of lights to share joy and happiness and exchanges the sweets and well wishes.
Usually Diwali is acknowledged as the Indian Hindus festival of lights, but many other countries and religions also celebrate the festival with different names and custom. People celebrate Diwali in Thailand, under the name of Lam Kriyongh. They celebrate in similar ways like in India and other countries, but the foremost attraction of the celebration is the floating lamps on the river, made by Banana leaf that gives a delightful view and blissful sensation. The people gather together and greet each other and distribute the sweets.
The Huge Indian Hindu and Sikhs populations have a presence in Canada, who celebrated Diwali on a large scale. They celebrate Diwali by Indian Hindu traditions. They wear the new clothes, do the fireworks, enlightening their houses and do the prayer and visiting friends and relatives and distribute sweets.
14. Diwali in Suriname
Suriname is a small country located in northern region of America, measured as a Caribbean country. Diwali is an annual celebration and non-working public holiday in Suriname. The one third of the population of Suriname is Hindu, the most of immigrants are the immigrated from Uttar pradesh and Bihar, India and Hindi and Bhojpuri (Awadhi) is an official language in Suriname. Most of the people in Suriname celebrate Diwali with full of passion, but they have different conventions than India and other countries.
15. Trinidad and Tobago
Diwali is the national festival and an esteemed and stylish celebration in Caribbean Island, Trinidad and Tobago. Almost fifty percent of the population existent on the island are the Indian and Hindus is, who celebrates Diwali in traditional Hindu ritual. Though it’s a Hindu festival, but almost all the people celebrate it full of zest. The celebrations continue for over a week all around the country and in Diwali Nagar, the headquarters of the National Council of Indian Culture is the main charm of festivity.