Nothing much that’s newsworthy happens on Diwali. There are no lengthy messages from the president or the prime minister or other political leaders, and a few photo-opportunities. Even the messages that they do send out are usually anodyne, straight out of the form book. This year, however, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s Diwali message deviated from precedents in a small but significant way. On Twitter, the PMO first tweeted the standard good wishes for prosperity, but then followed that up with:
“I hope that the festival of lights this year will mark the beginning of a new phase of optimism for each one of our people.” The PM has made long speeches recently insisting that “doom and gloom” is the problem with the economy. It seems, even when handing out Diwali greetings, his single-minded focus on raising “animal spirits” creeps in.