Diwali is one of the most popular festival of India and is celebrated with great enthusiasm and fervor throughout the country. The delight of this festival is is reflected in the soft glow of Diwali lights, Diwali Gifts and the colorful Diwali fireworks. It is also known as the 'Festival of lights' which is celebrated by all age groups with great fervor and gaiety. The festival symbolizes unity in diversity as every state celebrates it in its own special way. The first day of the festival Naraka Chaturdasi marks the vanquishing of the demon Naraka by Lord Krishna and his wife Satyabhama.
Deepawali, like other Indian festivals, signifies many different things to people across the country. On this auspicious day, North India celebrates Rama's homecoming, that is his return to Ayodhya after the defeat of Ravana and his coronation as king. In gujarat, the festival honors Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth. In West Bengal, Diwali is associated with the goddess Kali. In every region, the festival signifies the renewal of life, and accordingly it is common to wear new clothes on the day of the festival. This festival also heralds the approach of winter and the beginning of the sowing season.
Some family celebrate this festival with religious fast and other rituals while for others it is primarily a social occasion with visiting relatives and friends, exchange of sweets and food items, and a time of giving and receiving new clothes or utensils for the year. Every region and family has its own way to celebrate this festival of Diwali.
Indian merchants begin their fiscal year at this time and are particularly interested in attracting the good graces of the Goddess. Similarly, gambling is a favourite past time during this festival because it is believed that the winner will have financial success during the year. Some families keep a special box for Goddess Laxmi and drop a silver or gold coin.