LAHORE: The Hindu community living across the country is celebrating Diwali on Wednesday with religious zeal and fervor.
Hindu community celebrated the event at their temples through gatherings of families and decorating their houses and temples with colourful lights.
The Sindh government has announced a holiday for all its employees belonging to the Hindu community.
Diwali, known as the festival of lights, basically represents the triumph of good over evil. It is one of the important festivals celebrated by the community – a festivity which spreads over a period of three to five days. Hindus believe that it is observed in honour of deities Rama and Sita’s return to Ayodhya after their 14-year exile, and the destruction by Goddess Durga of a demon called Mahisha. Diwali also celebrates the goddess of wealth and prosperity, Lakshmi.
In Hyderabad, the pundits and devotees are holding prayers in different temples including Rama Pir Temple (Mochi Muhallah Sirrighat), Kali Temple (Feteh Chowk), ValmekTemple (Tando Wali Mohammad), Shankar Temple (Phullelli), Sain Baba Temple (ShahabCinema), GuruNanik Temple (Tilak Incline), Lakshmi Mata Temple (Qasimabad) and Jay Bhawani Temple (Hirabad).
Meanwhile, Hindu community in Karachi celebrated the festival. There are several small, as well as mid-sized temples in the metropolis, however, 200-year-old Swaminarayan is the largest one with a sizable number of Hindus living around and therefore many prefer to join the religious ritual performed here.
President Arif Alvi extended his greetings saying, “A very happy Diwali to all our Hindu citizens.”
Prime Minister Imran Khan earlier in the day extended Diwali greetings to the Hindu community as he tweeted, “Wishing all our Hindu citizens a happy Diwali.”
Wishing all our Hindu citizens a happy Diwali.
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) November 7, 2018
Federal Information and Broadcasting Minister Fawad Chaudhary also wished a happy Diwali to the Hindu community stating, “Happy Diwali to Hindus in Pakistan and around the world, Diwali symbolises the victory of good over evil, the struggle is continuing …,”
Happy Diwali to Hindus in Pakistan and around the world, DiWali Symbolises Victory of good over evil, the struggle is continuing … #Diwali
— Ch Fawad Hussain (@fawadchaudhry) November 7, 2018
Further, National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser on Tuesday greeted Hindu community and parliamentarians stating that Pakistan is a pluralistic country enriched with cultural diversity.
Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari also extended his wishes for Hindu community. In his message, he said that his party will always stand with the Non-Muslims in Pakistan and will assure their protection. He further said that PPP will work for the promotion of Non-Muslims as equal citizens of the state as per the vision of the founding fathers of the country and teachings of Islam.
The rituals of Diwali includes recitation of holy verses and hymns also encompasses specially arranged fireworks, leaving a colourful trail in the night sky.
Colourful patterns created on the floor with sand, rice or flower petals, called Rangolis, are also very peculiar to the occasion as members of the community decorating their homes and temples with fairy lights and clay lamps make extra efforts to make Rangoli at their homes and temples.
Lighting up firecrackers, another integral component of the celebration, continues during the night.