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Millions celebrate Diwali: The Indian festival of lights

The annual holiday kicks off on Saturday and lasts for five days, celebrating light overcoming darkness.

AUSTIN, Texas — Diwali, the Indian festival of lights, officially begins on Saturday and will last for the next five days.

The annual holiday is celebrated all over the world by millions of Hindus, Sikhs and Jains.

The ceremony is typically India's biggest celebration of the year, with lights, sweet candies, colorful gifts and all kinds of art.

Dr. Natasha Mikles, a philosophy lecturer at Texas State University, said the holiday stands for light overcoming darkness. Each of the five days has a special meaning.

RELATED: Burglars strike Hindus during Diwali

Dr. Mikles said Diwali isn't just celebrated in South Asia, but thousands are celebrating right here in our area.

"I think it's easy to think of Hinduism as a religion, or really Hinduism, Sikhism and Jainism, as religions that happen over there in South Asia and in India, but they are all around us here in Central Texas," she said. "We have one of the nation's largest Hindu temples out in Driftwood near the Salt Lick."

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, whose mother was born in Chennai, India, tweeted on Saturday that she and her husband wish everyone celebrating around the world a safe, healthy and joyous new year.


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