The Hindu festival of lights is also known as Diwali. It represents good triumphing over evil. Diwali is the beginning of a New Year for Hindus. The festivities are grand, especially in the north, the east and the central hills. Homes are decorated with designs known as Kolam and Rangoli, colourful drawings of folk art believed to represent sacred deities.
On the day of the festival devotees adorn themselves in their finest attire. A pooja to Goddess Lakshmi is followed by a family meal. In addition, sweets and gifts are distributed to loved ones while acts of charity towards the poor is also practised. The crowning glory of Diwali is the lighting of the home with lamps and candles at night.