Members of Peterborough's Bharat Hindu Samaj were recently invited to a reception in the House of Commons to celebrate Diwali. They were met by local MP Shailesh Vara, whose constituency of North West Cambridgeshire includes the southern half of the city.
Diwali is one of Hinduism's most important occasions. Also known as the Festival of Lights, it marks the triumph of good over evil, knowledge over ignorance and light over darkness.
Hindus across the world celebrate Diwali by lighting candles and lamps as part of the celebration.
Following the reception, Mr Vara said:
“I was very pleased to welcome to Parliament members from the local Hindu community for this very important Hindu festival.
“The message of the triumph of good over evil and light over darkness is highly appropriate given all the problems that the world faces today.”
Mr Kishor Ladwa, President of the Bharat Hindu Samaj added:
“On behalf of Peterborough’s Bharat Hindu Samaj I would like to thank Mr Shailesh Vara for looking after us so well on our recent visit to Parliament.
“It was a lovely occasion and an opportunity to celebrate Diwali with people from other parts of the UK, with candles being lit to wish for a better future for all of us.”
Mr Vishal Vichare, who lives in Hampton Water in Peterborough, commented:
“Diwali is a special occasion for Hindus and it was a great privilege to be able to celebrate it in the magnificent setting of the Palace of Westminster.
“It was a wonderful evening as Hindus pray for a better future in these troubled times.”
Photo: from left to right, front row: Ashish Pathak, Bina Pankhania, and Nagasayan Puppala. Back row: Rajni Reddy, Jayshree Mehta, Ramnik Mashru, Kishor Ladwa, Amit Mehta, Shailesh Vara MP, Vishal Vichare, and Dr Subhash Kandikatt.