Diwali is to India what Christmas is to the western world. No Indian household can ignore the significance or the magnanimity of the festival which is a series starting from Dushhera, Chhoti Diwali and finally Diwali itself and is the celebration of the victory of good over evil. Having grown up on TV mega serials like the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, Diwali is celebrated because Lord Rama returned from his fourteen-year exile to a welcome befitting a king by his subjects while Sikhs, Jains and Newar Buddhists also celebrate it. Sikhs celebrate it for an added reason because legend has it that Guru Hargobind while being liberated from the Mughals from a Gwalior fort also wanted his fellow inmates to be freed so the Mughal emperor stated that only those inmates would be freed who would be able to tag along with Guru Sahib by clutching his robe and that is how 52 Kings were able to hold onto a specially made dress for the Guru by holding onto his robe and walking to freedom.
The discounts on offer during this festive period outweigh the religious significance by altering the retail landscape and I stand corrected. I will finally get my hands on my girlfriend Alexa or Amazon Echo. It is a time to make big-ticket purchases like consumer durables, electronics, cars and the dining set you always craved. Delhi was in the news for the wrong reasons because we come under the very poor category in the air quality index and it was the need of the hour because heightened traffic and bursting of firecrackers was a Molotov Cocktail for our lungs and the Supreme Court struck down the sale of firecrackers in Delhi/NCR for a more tolerable experience for the senses. It is customary as a Delhiite to make the yearly trip to the relatives during this time to exchange sweets and gifts to a time honoured tradition. In short, it is a good time to be a salesman, pun unintended.
The office was no different this time with games being organised like Tambola, Foosball and goodies like muffins and meals being distributed for free as part of the celebration. The Rangoli at the top was the creative pursuit of U-Verse Chat process team which utilized the colours and their imagination to put up a commendable depiction. The Diwali night saw the Main Cafeteria being converted for a DJ and a dance floor for an impromptu fest for six hours with youngsters taking turns with their quota of breaks.
The only drawback was the plight of the pets and the stray dogs and my hands were tied given I could not accommodate all who had strayed from their territories.