Deepavali double delight

Deepavali double delight

As Hindus gear up to celebrate Deepavali on Nov 2, Little India is packing in the crowds with its annual street light-up and festive bazaars.

The yearly Deepavali Festival Village, which started on Sept 27, features 55 stalls and opens till Nov 1.

While it used to be held mainly along Campbell Lane, this year's bazaar is split between the lane and the parallel Hastings Road, as the Indian Heritage Centre at the junction of Campbell Lane and Clive Street is under construction.

Not that the stallholders mind though.

Barely a day after setting up shop last Friday, Ms S.N. Shanthi, 40, who owns Ayangaran Cookies along the quieter Hastings Road, reports that business has been brisk.

When Life!Weekend visited the bazaar on Saturday evening, she had sold more than 20 tins of her homemade muruku (South Indian savoury snack shaped in twists), ghee balls made of clarified butter, as well as athirasam (sweet doughnuts made with rice flour and jaggery, an unrefined Indian sugar). The number is comparable to that of previous years, when she ran a stall in Campbell Lane.

Ms Shanthi has been selling her snacks and cookies at the bazaar for the past eight years, which explains why customers recognised her even though she had yet to put up a banner bearing her shop name when Life!Weekend spoke to her.

"People will still come because sweets are the most important thing during Deepavali, and business will only get better because more people buy as the day draws closer so the food stays fresh," she says.

Deepavali or Diwali, commonly known as the festival of lights, is one of the most important festivals for Hindus.

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