The origin of this festival can be traced back to the ancient Hindu epic Ramayana, when Lord Ram returned to his kingdom Ayodhya after 14 years of exile. The whole kingdom was light up with diyas (earthen lamps) to celebrate his return. To date, on Diwali day, house all over Rajasthan glow with twinkle of innumerable diyas, candles and electric lights. The night is illuminated with the flaming lights of fireworks, creating kaleidoscopic designs against the black canvas of the sky. Diwali festivals give people a chance to decorate their homes, buy new clothes, visit relatives and friends and take time off from their daily routine to gather together and enjoy the festivities.
Month : November
Duration : 5 days
Timings : All day and Night
Location : In and around Rajasthan
Highlights : Dhanteras, Naraka Chaturdasi or ‘Choti Diwali’, Diwali, the day of the new moon, Padwa or Govardhan or Bali Pratipada, Bhai Dooj, last day of the festival
Diwali is celebrated with great joy and happiness in Rajasthan. Like other parts of India, Diwali in Rajasthan is celebrated for a period of 5 days. Starts from Dhanteras, Diwali continues to Choti Diwali, Badi (Main) Diwali, Padwa and Bhaiduj. Diwali festival preparations starts well in advance. People starts decorating their homes and prepare sweets, buy new clothes, jwellery. The last day of Diwali is the 15th day of Ashwin mass (month of hindu calender) which falls somewhere in the month of October and September.
During Diwali, people lit up clay oil lamps, make rangolis, perform ‘Puja’, exchange sweets with relatives,neighbours and fire crackers. All these deeds make this new moon night or Amavasya, a bright night with full of joy. Clay oil lamps, also called ‘Diyas’ or ‘Deep’ which can be Ghee Lamps, Ganesha Lamps or just simple candles are placed all over outside of the house, on floors , doorways. These deeds are believed to welcome Lord Ganesha, the ‘Remover of Obstacles’and Goddess of wealth, Laxmi in their home.