Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Edinburgh ready for Diwali festival

Dancers rehearse for Diwali Image copyright Edinburgh Diwali
Image caption Dancers will perform colourful and vibrant dances from different parts of India.

The annual Edinburgh Diwali festival is to take place this Saturday.

Diwali is celebrated by Hindus, Jains, Sikhs and Buddhists around the world, with each religion marking different historical events and stories.

Dancers, music, lanterns, fireworks, puppets and four giant Hindu Gods will mark Edinburgh's celebration of the South Asian Festival of Light.

The multicultural celebrations are free and open to all comers, and end with a firework display.

Mohindra Dhall, who heads the organising team, said: "Diwali is a celebration of the triumph of light over darkness and hope over fear.

"Our festival exemplifies the spirit of hope through unity."

The festival will be held on Saturday with a parade from The Royal Mile featuring four giant Hindu gods.

Other celebrations include seven pipe bands, led by the band of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, who will be joined by seven groups of folk dancers showcasing dance from India, Scotland and Cuba.

They will also be joined by Highland dancers and members of Scottish Ballet.

'World's festival city'

The city's Lord Provost Frank Ross, the event's patron, said: "Diwali is celebrated all over the world but in Edinburgh, it's a warm celebration of Indian culture and traditions with a unique Scottish twist.

"It brings the city together in an incredible way, no matter your faith or where you come from."

Councillor Donald Wilson hailed Edinburgh as the "world's festival city".

He added that the city gives "the ideal platform to not only promote Scottish traditions, but those of other faiths and countries".

The programme of events start at 16:15, finishing with a firework display at 19:00.

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