Diwali marks the beginning of the Hindu New Year and is celebrated with the lighting of lamps and candles, and lots of fireworks. It is regarded as one of the most important festivals of the Hindu calendar. It is celebrated across the nation with great pomp and excitement. The festival is mainly associated with lights as it is called the festival of light. The name Diwali signifies ‘rows of lighted lamps’. Diwali is a five-day festival, beginning on the 15th day of the Hindu calendar month of Kartika (Ashwin). Diyas and candles are placed on rooftops, rooms, and kitchen and even in the bathrooms. On this day, people worship Lord Ganesha, the foremost of all Hindu Gods and Goddess Lakshmi, the Goddess of Wealth and Prosperity. It is time to exchange gifts and sweets with friends, relatives and neighbors. Diwali in 2012 will start today, Tuesday, the 13th of November, and will continue for 5 days until Saturday, the 17th of November.
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