However, when I left office on Thursday, I wasn’t even thinking about the festival. I was flying high thinking about the looooooooong weekend that had started. But, just as when I parked my bike at home, I looked around. The car showrooms, the service centers, the hospital and all other building had lights all over. Suddenly, a deep sense of excitement prevailed within me. I realized how amazing the festival of lights can be.
Diwali has a special and yet, different meaning to various people. The reason why it is celebrated differs from place to place. Towards the North, Diwali is celebrated as the return of Rama, King of Ayodhya, with his wife Sita and brother Lakshmana to Ayodhya after a 14 year exile, and a war in which he killed Ravana. In Goa and other areas, it commemorates Narkasur’s killing by Lord Krishna.
During my Singapore and Malaysia visit last month, I had seen quite a few areas being decorated on account of Diwali. It is a national festival in these countries and not restricted to the Indian community alone. In Malaysia, Diwali is known as "Hari Deepavali," and is celebrated during the seventh month of the Hindu solar calendar. It is a federal public holiday throughout Malaysia. In Singapore, the festival is called "Deepavali", and is a gazetted public holiday. Thus, Diwali in true sense is a Global Festival.
The reasons may be many. But the purpose is more or all the sense. It celebrates the victory of good/god over the evil. I hope, this Diwali bring a lot of happiness and prosperity to India and Indians.
Today, India faces threats from both Internal as well as External agencies. The growth of Naxals is a worrying factor. Someday or the other, the fight will have to begin. Such anti-India movements will have to meet the same fate as Ravana and Narkasur. And only then, the country can be lit again. To celebrate, yet another victory.