New Delhi, Nov 13 (IANS) Exquisite rangolis in front of houses, early morning prayers, marigold flowers embellishing homes and offices, and last minute shopping... Delhi is all set to celebrate Diwali Tuesday.
While most roads were devoid of the usual heavy traffic and there were fewer passengers in buses and metros, neighbourhood markets were busy as people thronged for gift packs, firecrackers and decorative items.
"It's a ritual in our family to visit the temple on Diwali morning. After praying we will decorate our home with flowers," said Kanchan Singh, a 44-year-old businesswoman in Ashok Vihar in north Delhi.
Some like Akanksha Shankar, a 38-year-old homemaker from west Delhi's Patel Nagar who could not shop until now, rushed to the nearby market for some last minute Diwali goodies.
"I bought sweets, fancy lights as well as firecrackers for my 10-year-old son," she said.
Delhi Police and the fire department have made elaborate arrangements to ensure an accident free Diwali. Extra fire tenders are ready to deal with emergencies.
Diwali, which is celebrated on Amavasya (no moon day), is marked by lighting of lamps and diyas (earthen lamps) in the evening. It is the day to offer special prayers to Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth.
The festival of lights marks the triumph of good over evil, and is widely believed to mark the return of Hindu god Ram to Ayodhya after vanquishing the demon king Ravana.