'Diwali celebrations in Dubai just like they are back home'
Homes in several neighbourhoods across UAE are decked with colourful lights, flowers and festive-themed trinkets.
With Dubai launching its biggest ever Diwali celebrations, communities from across India are set to celebrate the 'festival of lights' with gaiety and gusto on Sunday.
From decorating homes with strings of twinkling lights and hand-painted earthen pots to rangolis (floral patterns), thousands of expats are gearing up to burst crackers, and gorge on lip-smacking food.
Homes in several neighbourhoods across Dubai, Sharjah, and Ajman are decked with colourful lights, flowers and festive-themed trinkets.
While major celebrations are taking place in Dubai Festival City and Al Seef in Dubai, homes in neighbourhoods such as Bur Dubai, Karama, Qusais, and Al Nahda in Dubai, will be glowing with festivities.
Khaleej Times caught up with several expats gearing up to celebrate Diwali, who said celebrations are just like they are in India.
Divya Narwani, a Sharjah resident, said: "Diwali is a time we spend with close friends and family. After the special Diwali prayers, we will be meeting with members from our community, relatives, and friends before heading for a Diwali party. Since I enjoy cooking, I will also prepare Diwali-themed dishes such as gajar ka halwa, masala kaju, ghud ki mithai, fresh mawa (for barfi), and naan khatai for home."
Amarjit Singh, a businessman in Dubai, said: "Ours is a community celebration. Nearly 120 individuals, including families from across India, get together at a hall in Dubai. We play games, organise performances. We have Housie games, and every person gets a prize for their performances. After that, we dance and have a festive-themed dinner."
Megha Ankit, an aircraft engineer in Dubai, said: "We had a special Diwali party at my home on Friday. We prepared several homemade delicacies such as kachoris, kheer, halwa, chana chaat, dal makhani, and dum aloo, to name a few."
Dubai-based entrepreneur Arti Karnik said: "Diwali is celebrated mostly with family. The preparation and cleaning begin a few weeks ahead of the festival. We buy decorations and give clothes for stitching. A big part of Diwali is the food; we prepare homemade namkeens (snacks with a salty flavour) and mithai (sweets) at home."
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