DIWALI celebrations over the last two nights have seen hundreds of people celebrate the Hindi new year in Southampton.

The Vedic Society Hindu Temple was the centre of the celebrations across Hampshire with fireworks lighting up the night sky followed by a cultural feast.

Hundreds of people saw a dazzling display of colours when rockets and bangers fired into the air from the Radcliffe Road temple.


After sparks of every colour were thrown across the sky there was traditional dancing and a service by the priest of the temple, Ritesh Bhatt, where devotion was made to the goddess of wealth.

Last night, children from the two dance troupes – the Vedic Society and the Vedic Balvikas – took part in dances celebrating the arrival of the New Year before the ceremony was blessed by Mr Bhatt.

“It was brilliant, we had a great turnout, probably about 300 people were here,” said the secretary of the Radcliffe Road temple, Dhurjati Shukla.

“The fireworks are the main highlight for tonight, its gives people the opportunity to meet others here.”

Last night also saw presentations made to Ramstores and Bookers Cash and Carry who helped make the event happen.

The congregation then enjoyed the food that had been created by the community which resulted in hundreds of dishes prepared for the banquet.