Numerous celebrations occur all over Auckland during October for Diwali. Also known as Deepavali (the festival of lights). Diwali signifies different things in different parts of India, and it is a celebration that now extends across different religions: Sikhs, Jains and some Buddhists and Muslims.
Some Indians focus on Laxmi, the goddess of wealth and fertility. While others celebrate Rama’s return to the kingdom of Ayodhya after a 14-year exile. People set out lamps to light his path, making this the “Festival of Lights.” Diwali signifies the triumph of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance and hope over despair. The religious festival has a focus on welcoming wealth and prosperity into the home by celebrating with family using lights, decorations and food.
Here in the Bay, Kesha Surti is an award winning Bollywood style choreographer of Khottey Sikkey and says she is looking forward to the festival. “It’s very special to me to celebrate Diwali with family. We look back a whole year, put any failures behind us and then together look forward to success. There’s a lot of positivity and happiness with the lights, colours and delicious food.”
Kesha teaches dance at the BHB Community Centre to Chottey Sikkey, a group consisting of children three years and over. This group, along with mainstage group Khottey Sikkey, also support events like the Santa Parade and library celebrations
Jai, John, Kerrie, Lance, Lisa, Suzy, Varsha