Today begins the Indian holiday Deepavali/Diwali. The five-day celebration will culminate Sunday with Diwali, the Festival of Lights, at the Museo de Arte Costarricense.
¨The celebration is meant to show the significance of Diwali and how it is celebrated,¨ said Minush Manchanda, one of Diwali´s organizers. ¨It´s an attempt to bring together the Costa Rican and Indian people.¨
For the first time in Costa Rica the event, hosted by Asociación Costa Rica India, will offer an open invitation to the public. The previous celebration used to only involve a few Indian families, Kapil Gulati, an organizer, said. Usually Hindu attire is required, but, due to scarcity, formal clothes will be allowed.
The festival will begin at 4 p.m. and start with speeches, followed by a cultural show of 10 to 15 performers. Prayers will be offered, then traditional Indian food will be served and wrapup at 7 p.m.
Celebrated once a year, the religious holiday marks the entrance to the Hindu new year, and, Manchanda said, is one of the most significant and joyous nights of the year. Diwali means to understand and reflect upon the significant purpose of each of the five days of festivities, lighting the lamp of knowledge within participants and bringing those thoughts in to day-to-day lives, Manchanda said.
No more than 150 people will be able to attend. Those who wish to attend are asked to say so to firstname.lastname@example.org.