Diwali celebrations 2020: Scope of Diwali celebrations and how it has changed due to Covid-19 pandemic

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Updated: Nov 09, 2020 12:47 PM

One of the popularly celebrated festivals in India, Diwali is around the corner and this year the celebrations are not likely to be grand and exquisite.

diwali, diwale sale, festive buying, covid 19, coronavirus, pottery markets in delhi, Delhi diwali pottery hubsPeople are now inclined towards purchase of eco-friendly earthen pots and diyas.

One of the popularly celebrated festivals in India, Diwali is around the corner and this year the celebrations are not likely to be grand and exquisite. All celebrations have been muted this year in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic. The usual meetings with relatives and friends to exchange gifts, huge melas, bursting crackers- everything which is associated with Diwali and used to take place till last year will not happen this year.

Physical distancing in place: Since Coronavirus transmission fear is far from over, all physical distancing norms are in place. Last month, the government had released guidelines for the festive season where it urged people to follow all COVID-19 guidelines and avoid crowding. Melas and other activities that will lead to crowding will be avoided and are strictly prohibited in the containment zones.

Many haats like Hunar Haat that are being organised around this time will now take place online. The ministry of minority affairs that backs the Hunar Haat, has started registering artisans as well as their indigenous products on GeM (Government e-Marketplace). This will allow people to explore and purchase products without actually visiting haat/ melas.Apart from this, people are avoiding going to their friends/ relatives houses to exchange Diwali gifts. Rather, the trend of e-gifts has emerged. E-commerce giants like Amazon have prepared Diwali gifts so people can send it directly to others. Companies like ITC have come up with gifting options for Diwali. ITC Hotels is giving gift cards and hampers. These services are expected to reduce physical contact between people and maintain the festive spirit.

Eco-friendly measures: Keeping in view the current situation of pandemic and increasing air pollution, many states are not in favour of burning crackers. In the National Capital, the use of firecrackers has been banned. Following the decision of Delhi government, NGT today has also said that there will be no sales of firecrackers in Delhi starting today (November 9) till November 30. The decision has come as the air quality in the city falls into an extremely bad category. Neighbouring state Haryana has given permission to burn crackers for only a few hours on Diwali nights.

Similarly, other states in India have come up with their own norms for bursting crackers. It is to note that the crackers used are expected to be green crackers only that will contribute less in polluting air.

In addition to this, people are now inclined towards purchase of eco-friendly earthen pots and diyas. On Diwali, everyone lights diyas at their homes and surroundings. As there is not much to do this festive season, purchasing diyas and lighting it up remains an activity that has brought cheer among people. In Tripura, diyas are now being made from bamboo sticks.

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