Observances of Diwali differ depending on region and tradition. Among Hindus the most widespread custom is the lighting of diyas (small earthenware lamps filled with oil) on the night of the new moon to invite the presence of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth. In Bengal the goddess Kali is worshipped. In North India the festival also celebrates the royal homecoming of Rama (along with Sita, Lakshmana, and Hanuman) to the city of Ayodhya after defeating Ravana, the 10-headed king of the demons, thus connecting the festival with the holiday of Dussehra. In South India the festival marks Krishna’s defeat of the demon Narakasura. Some celebrate Diwali as a commemoration of the marriage of Lakshmi and Vishnu, while others observe it as the birthday of Lakshmi.
During the festival, diyas are lit and placed in rows along the parapets of temples and houses and set adrift on rivers and streams. Homes are decorated, and floors inside and out are covered with rangoli, consisting of elaborate designs made of coloured rice, sand, or flower petals. The doors and windows of houses are kept open in the hope that Lakshmi will find her way inside and bless the residents with wealth and success.
Sometimes, the Indian Business Chamber in Vietnam (INCHAM) organizes Diwali Carnival sometimes in Ho Chi Minh City to celebrate India’s Festival of Lights.
The celebration aims to increase awareness and understanding of the Indian culture among Vietnamese and international brethren.
The Diwali Carnival in Ho Chi Minh City has become a major event in the Ho Chi Minh City’s cultural calendar attracting participants from Indians, expats from other countries and Vietnamese residents.
In India, people will celebrate its biggest festival, Diwali, this weekend, as it battles the world’s second-largest coronavirus pandemic and enters its annual air pollution season.
Experts fear those factors combined could lead to a surge in coronavirus cases, especially in the capital where infections are already surging.
India has reported more than 8.7 million coronavirus cases, more than any other country in the world besides the United States. While the country is now reporting fewer cases than at its peak in September, cases are rising again in the capital New Delhi, which reported a record number of daily fatalities on Thursday.
The authorities are warning holiday-makers to practice social distancing, but this week market places continued to throng with shoppers ahead of the festive season.