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Indian festival returns to city streets

Published date: 25 September 2012 |
Published by: Staff reporter
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Dancers during last year's Diwali festival in Chester 

THE colourful Indian festival Diwali returns to Chester next month.

The Hindu festival will be celebrated on Saturday, October 6 in an explosion of colour and noise starting with a procession from the Town Hall Square at noon.

Sanjhi Indian Association has been working with Cheshire, Halton and Warrington Race and Equality Centre and Cheshire West and Chester Council to build on the success of the two previous years events.

Council leader Mike Jones, who is also executive member for equality and diversity, said: “Diwali is one of the most popular festivals in South Asia and has now become very much part of Chester’s yearly celebrations.

“It is wonderful to see our local communities getting ready together to celebrate the festival of light for the third year.”

After leaving the Town Hall, the procession travels down Northgate Street and left into Eastgate Street where there will be a dance display at about 12.20pm.

The procession then continues down Watergate Street to the Guildhall where everyone is invited to take part in free workshops between 1pm and 3pm. 

These will be Indian art or rangoli, Indian candles known as diyas, henna or Indian hand painting, Indian doll making and plate decorating along with free Indian food tasting.

Sanjhi Indian Association chairman Sarika Kaushik said: “Diwali is very much a festival bringing a reaffirmation of hope, a renewed commitment to friendship and goodwill, and an opportunity to celebrate the various joys of life.

“There are several different legends that go with the festival in different parts of India, but in essence Diwali is a celebration of good over evil, light over darkness and knowledge over ignorance.

“Please come along and see the colourful parade and dancing and take part in the free workshops.”

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