Diwali, the festival of joy, happiness and sweets, was historically celebrated with a huge pomp and show, like a ceremony, but now it is being challenged due to urbanisation and increasing commercialisation. Being the start of the Indian New Year, its celebration takes place around the world with all kinds of festivities to mark the occasion. Quite certainly, it is a festival of happiness for people in the entire world.
Looking back at Diwali over the years, it has gone through many changes. Earlier, one could witness Diwali festivities starting two weeks before the festival, which is now sadly reduced to three to four days before Diwali. From purchase of new clothes and cleaning of houses to buying crackers and gifts, everything is now just a two-three day event. People are meant to light real diyas and candles around their houses, but nowadays people buy electronic light decorations and electronic diyas. Large families use to meet and hand each other gifts personally by visiting them. But now gift culture is more of a give-and-take. Moreover, people shop online and transport gifts to their relatives during celebrations. People use to spend so many hours on making rangolis and that too with natural ingredients (including flowers), but now you can see rangoli made using stencils and ready-made rangoli colours.
Naveen Nayyar, a resident of Amritsar says that Diwali was more of a family affair before. “As children, we used to celebrate Diwali from a religious point of view and now it is only for showing-sake. New generation is hardly aware about the tradition and the religious belief behind it.”
Atul Khanna, another resident remembering the good old times says, “Earlier, Diwali was much safer festival, as there were small crackers which led to comparatively less pollution and less danger to life, but today it is more risky due to crackers of ‘high quality’, which are harmful and generates more pollution, while can also harm the lives of people directly.”
Times have changed with the advancements, people have become so preoccupied with their work that it is not easy to have a get-together. Besides all these, Diwali will always remain an opportunity for celebrations.
About the Author:
Pursuing Bachelors in Journalism and Mass Communication from BBK DAV College For Women, Amritsar. Ambitious about event management while always keen to have new experiences.