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Five festival of lights other than Diwali

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When Indians are busy gearing up to celebrate Diwali, here is a look at five light festivals across the globe.

China’s Lantern Festival

Chinese Celebrate The Lantern Festival

The Lantern Festival marks the end of the Chinese New Year and is observed on the first lunisolar month of the Chinese lunar calendar. Also known as the Shangyuan or the Yuanxiao festival, the lantern festival is celebrated with colourful lanterns and lights especially the red colour.

Beautifully made lanterns are hung from houses by the Chinese. The intrinsic beauty of the light makes the festival a must-attend for every Chinese.

St Lucia’s Day

Lucia-13.12.06

Symbolizing hope and light, St Lucia’s Day is celebrated on December 13 in all Scandinavian countries to mark the martyrdom of St Lucia. The eldest girl in the house is made to dress in white and red carries a wreath of candles. The festival also marks the beginning of Christmas celebration.

Festival of Lights, Berlin

The newest entrant in the list of festival of lights, the Berlin Light Festival was kicked off by Birgit Zander in 2005. Celebrated in the month of October, Berlin gets transformed into a city of lights with all buildings and installations getting illuminated with lights. The cultural events also add flavor to the event which has now become a favourite tourist destination globally.

Aomori Nebuta Matsuri

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Celebrated in Aomori, Japan, this is also a festival where light plays the most alluring factor. Myriad hues, lights and Japanese melodies and parades add to the festivities. Colourfully lighted hangings make the atmosphere intoxicating.

 

 

Las Fellas

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The fire festival of Spain is another festival where light is used to celebrate Spain’s culture.  Mostly celebrated by carpenters, the festival celebrates the victory of light over darkness. It is the day where Spanish people pay homage to St Joseph.

 

 

(Picture Courtesy: kvil.cbslocal.com, www.daisukijapan.com,www.flickr.com)

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Delhi’s Air Quality Leads To Ban On Trucks And Construction

The measures include a ban on industries using coal and biomass, brick kilns, construction activities and entry of trucks into Delhi.

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India, air pollution, WHO, diwali, Pollution, Delhi, egypt, air quality
A man walks in front of the India Gate shrouded in smog in New Delhi, India. VOA

With no improvement in the air quality of Delhi-NCR even three days after Diwali, the environment authority on Saturday extended the ban on the entry of trucks, construction and polluting industries.

The Supreme Court-appointed Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) on Saturday ordered the Delhi government to extend the ban which was imposed on November 2.

Pollution, Delhi, egypt, air quality
As pollution levels spike, Delhi and its satellite towns are enveloped in a haze of smog. VOA

The restrictions imposed till November 10 were extended to November 12, by when there will be an improvement in the air quality of Delhi-NCR, as forecast by pollution monitoring agencies.

The restrictions were imposed by the EPCA under the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP).

Delhi’s air quality started deteriorating a day after Diwali to “severe-plus” or “emergency” due to fireworks and weather conditions like wind speed and dipping mercury, leading to lower dispersion rate of pollutants. The Air Quality Index (AQI) on Saturday was 401 or “severe”.

India, air pollution, WHO, diwali, Pollution, Delhi, egypt, air quality
A bird flies past the Humayun’s Tomb shrouded in smog in New Delhi, India. VOA

“The CPCB-headed task force has informed EPCA that given the prevailing adverse conditions, the following measures will remain until November 12, when it will further review the situation and inform us,” said EPCA Chairman Bhure Lal, in a letter to Delhi Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash, the Delhi Environment Secretary and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee.

Also Read: Delhi’s Pollution Brings Down The Diwali High

The measures include a ban on industries using coal and biomass, brick kilns, construction activities and entry of trucks into Delhi. The restrictions exclude power plants and waste to energy plants. (IANS)