Diwali is my favorite festival. Diwali is popular festival of India but of late it has become the single most popular festival of all Indians irrespective of caste, color, creed and sex. Reasons—aren’t we secular. On Diwali day we put on funny attire and name it designers’ clothes. Men flaunt in kurta-payjama complete with fine embroidery and call it metro-sexual. Months before Diwali, bazaar is full of ‘diwali sale’ hoardings. These sales are called and aptly so the ‘clearance sale’ for it clears clean the purse and wallets of customers. People eagerly look forward round the year to spend their entire year’s savings on buying things they didn’t really need and could ill-afford. We do come across ads which proclaim “mill closure “to promote the diwali sale. Housewives are visibly moved by such disclosures and are seen moving rather rushing to rescue the ‘bankrupt’ mill-owner by purchasing things several time over their actual need, thereby, contributing their bit to make good the losses of the mill owner.
Diwali is my favorite festival. Diwali is the official festival of offering and accepting bribe. You can without any hesitation whatsoever offer and accept bribe on this day. It is all official; the sole precaution is to name it –a diwali gift. People go to the extent of gifting diamond jewellery set to swanky car. You can grease the ever-itching palm of powers-be who are likely to be hurdles or facilitator in your route to success. Please do not forget to thank the offeree by clearing his license/permit /promotion/posting or else he will lose faith in the very system and the festival will lose its sanctity to the dismay of other genuine offerees and recipients. That would be too damaging.’ system’s failure’ that is, to the spirit of diwali. Diwali is required to be celebrated with great fervor and fraternity.
Earlier it used to be customary kheel-batashe or at the most sweets which were fondly distributed among friendly and not so friendly neighbors alike. Not any more. The festival does not promote fraternity any more rather the fracas result in animosity among neighbors, friends and relatives. Diabetes among other things is also known for diminishing the desire for consuming sweets. Therefore, the latest benchmark in the field is dry-fruits.
Diwali is celebrated with great pomp and show, more show than you can pomp. Kitty parties are organized in various house-holds and ladies clubs, where members display their new collection of sarees and discuss latest hairdo. Hotels organize fashion shows and disco programs of the magnitude in keeping with their star-rating. Homes are decorated with series of colored tiny light bulbs tied together. Music is on high pitch with latest remixes played several times over. Children and child-like folks flock together and go for crackers and light up mild bombs. Of late, we come across bigger bombs resulting in larger causalities, thanks to rising terrorism, the statement which flow from our desi politicians after each such explosion only adds to the nuisance and pollution. No doubt Diwali inspires terrorists also. The pollution created in one night is sufficient to kill and ill the mosquitoes and men respectively. They, the men, not mosquitoes rush to their family doctors who too wait for entire year to go for the kill. Docs celebrate diwali, a day after, when patients make a bee-line to their clinic for getting fleeced.
The day is also marked for worshipping Laxmi—the goddess of wealth. Notwithstanding the fact that in our country the goddess of wealth is worshipped day in day out throughout the year. Devotees are more than prepared to sacrifice both their honor and honesty on the holy altar to please the goddess. Goddess Laxmi is worshipped, pampered and her benediction sought with such an intense devotion those other goddesses feel neglected, hence, envious. The devotees of other goddesses especially that of Saraswati(goddess of education/fine arts) are often found sulking and cursing on their wrong choice of avocation/goddess. People keep the doors and windows of their house open. The lights are kept switched on in the fond belief that if the route to their house remains illuminated Laxmi would not face any difficulty while paying a flying visit to their home, lest she is waylaid by the ever competing neighbors. Often people are robbed of their existing wealth courtesy thieves and robbers who do overtime during diwali season.
People go for alcohol with all the capacity at their command. They drink non-stop as if there is no tomorrow. They drink more than their gastronomical/economical capacity permits from expensive scotch to spurious hooch. Consuming spurious hooch has its own advantages. People sacrifice their lives drinking poisonous liquor and help solve the population problem of their motherland by attaining instant nirvana. The survivors generally lose their eyesight and become staunch supporter of ‘see no evil’ sect.
Diwali is my favorite festival. I am secular, therefore, I cherish and wait year long for the iftaar feast too. More so if the feast happens to be organized by some influential socialites. Here I mingle with VIPs in the hope that others who have come to see and be seen may take me too for a VIP of some sort. This has helped me in getting into the PR circuit. At home, of course, I order free home delivery pizza under ‘buy one get one free’ scheme.
Indeed, diwali is my favorite festival.