Diwali -It’s a memory fiesta.

 Kuch Mithi Yaadon Ka Uphaar Lai Hai Ye Diwali!!

With festival season comes the season of house cleaning as well, that’s what my maid (who doesn’t have much to do with cleanliness and highly believes in shortcuts) uttered last Friday when I announced to everyone in the family including my maid that this particular weakened will be dedicated to “Diwali Ki Safai”. What a pun…its actually nowhere Diwali ki safai but aapke ghar ki safai of course.


We Indians are so deeply into religions that cleaning for us is also a religion. It’s so evident how we love anything and everything related to religion. Temples are cleaned every day and our roads are filthy all the time.

Anyways, it’s that time of the year when every nook and corner of the house has to be refreshed and rewind. Yes, you read it correct – rewind. While the safai abhiyan of my house every time I encounter some memories of my childhood or old days. This time I found pictures of Diwali celebrated in Barauni Refinery Township, as my father was deputed there too for quite some time. I can recall very well our small cosy flat of two bedroom in the huge IOC township and how we all sister and brothers used to help mommy in her safai abhiyan and home decoration.

I found a very infrequent picture of me and my brothers sitting around a toy house. My 2 and half year old actually has given this name – Toy house to that small, colorful and ingeniously decorated GHARAUNDA. I sat astonished that how the dust of time has roofed my childhood memory that I have almost forgotten the most fun element of my childhood Diwali. It was the most stimulating and fascinating part that I and my twin brothers waited every year to make and decorate in Diwali. Making the best Gharaunda was a kind of competition in our small group in colony amongst the bunch of kids. All the neighborhood friends, uncle and aunties would come to not only wish Happy Diwali and have sweets but also to see what new, kids have done this time to make their Gharaunda look the best. And we used to also visit other houses in the neighbor with the same intention. Although there was no award for all the hard work in making and designing the Gharaunda but now sitting and staring at those memories I realize I have got all the hard work paid back. We didn’t realize we are making memories while making the Gharaunda , we just knew we were having fun.

May be I am a part of modern generation but here I again fail to be a rooted mother just like my mom who actually taught us and gifted us this Gharaunda memory. At least she imparted me the roots and joys of my tradition and practices, and I just got carried away with the events happening in life and missed the most fun element of my childhood. The next thing last weekend I did was to call my mother and shared how I am missing making Gharaunda now, she laughed out loud and only said – I am happy at least, that you still remember, you busy mother. Conversation on Gharaunda with my mother pops up one of the poetry by Gulzar in my heart:

बचपन वाली दिवाली

हफ्तों पहले से साफ़-सफाई में जुट जाते हैं

चूने के कनिस्तर में थोड़ी नील मिलाते हैं

अलमारी खिसका खोयी चीज़ वापस  पाते हैं

दोछत्ती का कबाड़ बेच कुछ पैसे कमाते हैं

चलो इस दफ़े दिवाली घर पे मनाते हैं  ….

दौड़-भाग के घर का हर सामान लाते हैं

चवन्नी -अठन्नी  पटाखों के लिए बचाते हैं

सजी बाज़ार की रौनक देखने जाते हैं

सिर्फ दाम पूछने के लिए चीजों को उठाते हैं

चलो इस दफ़े दिवाली घर पे मनाते हैं ….

बिजली की झालर छत से लटकाते हैं

कुछ में मास्टर  बल्ब भी  लगाते हैं

टेस्टर लिए पूरे इलेक्ट्रीशियन बन जाते हैं

दो-चार बिजली के झटके भी  खाते हैं

चलो इस दफ़े दिवाली घर पे मनाते हैं ….

दूर थोक की दुकान से पटाखे लाते है

मुर्गा ब्रांड हर पैकेट में खोजते जाते है

दो दिन तक उन्हें छत की धूप में सुखाते हैं

बार-बार बस गिनते जाते है

चलो इस दफ़े दिवाली घर पे मनाते हैं ….

धनतेरस के दिन कटोरदान लाते है

छत के जंगले से कंडील लटकाते हैं

मिठाई के ऊपर लगे काजू-बादाम खाते हैं

प्रसाद की  थाली   पड़ोस में  देने जाते हैं

चलो इस दफ़े दिवाली घर पे मनाते हैं ….

माँ से खील में से  धान बिनवाते हैं

खांड  के खिलोने के साथ उसे जमके खाते है

अन्नकूट के लिए सब्जियों का ढेर लगाते है

भैया-दूज के दिन दीदी से आशीर्वाद पाते हैं

चलो इस दफ़े दिवाली घर पे मनाते हैं ….

दिवाली बीत जाने पे दुखी हो जाते हैं

कुछ न फूटे पटाखों का बारूद जलाते हैं

घर की छत पे दगे हुए राकेट पाते हैं

बुझे दीयों को मुंडेर से हटाते हैं

चलो इस दफ़े दिवाली घर पे मनाते हैं ….

बूढ़े माँ-बाप का एकाकीपन मिटाते हैं

वहीँ पुरानी रौनक फिर से लाते हैं

सामान से नहीं, समय देकर सम्मान  जताते हैं

I don’t know whether I will be as efficacious as my parents in educating my daughter the excitement and enthusiasm of making a Gharaunda or a toy house in Amber’s word, or whether l will be able to inculcate in her my tradition & practises, but I will surely give it a try this Diwali. I don’t see this exercise of celebrating Diwali in any other part of the country except Bihar and some parts of UP.

You see festivals are all about good and beautiful memories….and the best thing about memories is, making them….!

Wish you all a very Happy and Prosperous Memories this Diwali