New Delhi: Diwali, the festival of lights was celebrated in Abu Mureikha province of Abu Dhabhi with great fervor & gaiety, as more than 10,000 devouts and visitors assembled at the majestic BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir for third year in a row. On the occasion, BAPS temple, the first Hindu temple being built here, was illuminated with lights & diyas. The visitors were given a traditional welcome at the entrance with a rangoli and festive colours.
A host of dignitaries took part in the festive celebrations including His Excellency, Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, Minister of Tolerance and Co-existence of the UAE. His Excellency lit a lamp and greeted everyone a very happy and prosperous Diwali.
He said, ‘may the light of Diwali fill your homes with abundance and bless your relationships with joy and laughter as you share this wonderful celebration. I share in your joy as you rejoice in your victory of light over darkness, good over evil and knowledge over ignorance.”
“In UAE, Diwali has become an important event that celebrates the culture and tradition of India. May this Diwali be an opportunity for enriching and enhancing peace, love, tolerance and human fraternity,” he further said.
Speaking on the magnificence & splendor of the BAPS temple, His Excellency said, “this Mandir is going to be iconic and unique. The craftsmanship is intricate and amazing, and the place will help spread global harmony.”
بحضور نهيان بن مبارك، وسنجاي سودهير سفير جمهورية الهند لدى الدولة، دائرة تنمية المجتمع – أبوظبي تشارك في احتفالات عيد الأنوار الهندي “ديوالي” بتنظيم المعبد الهندوسي في الإمارة، في إطار جهودها الرامية إلى نشر وتعزيز قيم التسامح بين أفراد المجتمع. pic.twitter.com/aagQKiNeSm
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Other notable dignitaries who joined Diwali celebrations included His Excellency Sunjay Sudhir, India Ambassador to UAE, His Excellency Jose Aguero Avila, Republic of Paraguay Ambassador to UAE.
The visitors were treated with an elaborate spread of 1,200 food dishes known as Annakut. An exhibition was also organized to mark the centenary celebrations of BAPS founder & spiritual leader – Pujya Pramukh Swami Maharaj. A series of cultural programs & devotional songs was also performed by noted members of Indian community.
A fun area was also created for the children, where they participated in various interactive & activity games. This was organized to educate them about the significance of festival and also make them aware about importance of community service.
A blood camp has was organized in partnership with the Abu Dhabi Blood Bank, where willing visitors came forward to donate their blood.