Close to 90 of people from the local community came together on Saturday 18 November at Fitzharrys School Abingdon, Oxford to experience the vibrant sounds, flavours and colours of Diwali – ‘the Festival of Light’ – and the Hindu New Year. It was one of the largest devotional celebrations Oxford.
Archanaben Amin, a local BAPS volunteer, explained, “Diwali and the Hindu New Year bring values of goodwill, charity and harmony across communities in the UK. As families continue to grapple with challenges, it was heartwarming to bring some festive joy and smiles to the people of Oxford and share memories that will bring hope and light for the rest of the year and beyond.”
The Diwali festivities included the annakut – ‘a mountain of food’ consisting of hundreds of dishes freshly prepared by devotees – that was artistically arranged as a devotional offering of the first meal of the New Year made in thanksgiving to God.
Visitors enjoyed delicious vegetarian sweet and savoury snacks and various souvenirs.