Diwali is a festival of lights, new clothes, lots of sweets and prolonged Puja paraphernalia. It marks the beginning of a new legend, the home coming of Lord Rama after having spent fourteen years in exile and also having freed his consort Sita from the evil clutches of the demon king Ravana. On this day, people clean their houses; wear new clothes, light up their homes with diyas and even burn crackers as a mark of celebration and rejoicing. Goddess Lakshmi is worshipped so as to achieve blessings of wealth and prosperity for al the year round. The festival of Diwali marks the triumph of good over evil and also of light over darkness.
Diwali this year is being celebrated on the 30th of October. It is regarded as the most auspicious and festive among the five days of Diwali. This festival marks the home coming and welcoming of Lord Rama back to Ayodhya. On this day a glittering row of lights radiates from every household. This festival also symbolizes the return of the Pandavas from the forest, as per the epic Mahabharata. Diwali is the most enlivening and significant festival which is celebrated throughput the Indian sub continent and also by Hindus located at every nook and corner of the world. The literal meaning of the word Deepawali is ‘an array of lights.’
Diwali night is landscaped by well illuminated houses, parks and all public places. The sky is dotted with colorful and vibrant fireworks. People are spoilt for the choices available at the market place while purchasing new clothes and fireworks. Every household is busy with preparations for the Lakshmi Puja, decorating their houses with Rangoli and lights, and even making arrangements for honoring the Goddess of wealth and seeking her blessings. All the family members of every Hindu family participate in the rituals of Diwali pujan while a priest performs all the puja activities ceremoniously. Families distribute gifts and sweets to their relatives, friends and their near and dear ones.
On this day businessmen perform the ‘Chopda Pujan’ which involves inauguration of the new books of accounts for the running financial year. On this day, it is considered highly auspicious to start with a new business venture. In the state of West Bengal, Goddess Kali is worshipped with great pomp mad grandeur on this day of Diwali puja.