Prayer for victory over virus


Solemn wishes: (From third left) Khaty, Jagjeet and their friends lighting up the ‘Kuthu Vilakku’ during the early Deepavali celebration at Arulmigu Sree Veeramuthu Maha Mariamman Temple in Bayan Lepas, Penang. — LIM BENG TATT/The Star

DEEPAVALI is a timely reminder that Good always triumphs over Evil. For this year’s Festival of Lights tomorrow, the Hindu community will come together to pray for the Covid-19 pandemic to end soon as a sign that good will eventually prevail.

For Khaty Gurwant Kaur, even though she is a Punjabi, she’s determined to educate the younger generation on the significance of the Festival of Lights.

“We invited five families here to celebrate Deepavali.

“We hope that the Festival of Lights will bring peace, harmony and good health for the nation.

“As a Punjabi, we celebrate both Vaishaki in April and the Diwali which is also significant because it coincides with Bandi Chhor Divas.

“The Indians usually celebrate Deepavali on the first day while the Punjabis celebrate it on the second day.

“Deepavali is an occasion to celebrate victory over defeat, light over darkness, awareness over ignorance, and it’s an occasion to celebrate life.

(From left) Friends Reshmaljeet Kaur Hardip Singh, 12, Dishaalini Ganesan, 24, Sharveshvaaran Ganesan, 13, Pavithra Surresh Kumar, 21, and Nivaashini Ganesan, 15, lighting up the oil lamps during the Deepavali celebration at Arulmigu Sree Veeramuthu Maha Mariamman Temple in Bayan Lepas, Penang. — Photo: LIM BENG TATT/The Star(From left) Friends Reshmaljeet Kaur Hardip Singh, 12, Dishaalini Ganesan, 24, Sharveshvaaran Ganesan, 13, Pavithra Surresh Kumar, 21, and Nivaashini Ganesan, 15, lighting up the oil lamps during the Deepavali celebration at Arulmigu Sree Veeramuthu Maha Mariamman Temple in Bayan Lepas, Penang. — Photo: LIM BENG TATT/The Star

“This year is rather different due to the pandemic, but we hope that the coming years will be better for everyone, ” she said at the Arulmigu Sree Veeramuthu Maha Mariamman Temple in Bayan Lepas.

While the children were busy making the ‘kolam’ also known as a ‘Rangoli’, Khaty shared Indian sweets and delicacies with her family and friends.

“We prepared traditional Indian sweets and snacks such as laddu, barfi, mesu, coconut candy, ghee balls and muruku. “I understand that the muruku is usually made first as a thanksgiving to the God of Fire, ” she said.

During the celebration, Kathy and her friends lit up oil lamps and the ‘Kuthu Vilakku’ to symbolise victory over evil.

“The ‘Kuthu Vilakku’ has five wicks which represent the five main elements of life.

“The big ‘Kuthu Vilakku’ is only used on big occasions.

“The light symbolises a bright and happy life, ” she shared.

Meanwhile, entrepreneur Jagjeet Kaur, 37, said Deepavali was celebrated on a larger scale in the previous years.

“But this year, we have to flatten the Covid-19 curve. So, we have to strictly adhere to all the standard operating procedures. We’re still celebrating it but on a smaller scale, ” she said.

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