This year, the 15th day of Kartika in the Hindu calendar falls on October 19 to mark the beginning of Diwali, the Festival of Lights, which is celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists and Jains throughout Canada and around the world. For the occasion, Canada Post and India Post released their first joint issue one month before the festival.
The Canadian special commemorative stamp, which can be reprinted based on demand, was designed by Doreen Colonello at Entro Communications. It is part of our second issue this year on multicultural events.
Illumination is believed to ward off evil and attract happiness and good fortune. In keeping with these beliefs, annual Diwali traditions include fireworks and the lighting of rows of small clay lamps – much like the ones depicted on the stamps. Colourful geometric rangoli patterns are created using such things as rice, paint, sand or flower petals. Also, special sweets are enjoyed and gifts exchanged.
Canada Post and India Post joined hands to issue stamps that celebrate Diwali, the Festival of Lights, an important annual observance for many Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists and Jains in Canada and around the world. The joint stamp issue is a historic first between these postal services and reflects our country’s diversity in the year of Canada 150.
India Post's Joint Issue Diwali Stamps
About a month ahead of Diwali celebrations, which will be held from October 19 to 23, two domestic-rate stamps are available in Canada. A stamp with a red background is the Canadian design, while one with a gold background was designed by India Post. The souvenir sheet has a Canadian international rate stamp and an Indian stamp.
Diwali, a five-day celebration, begins on the 15th day of Kartika in the Hindu calendar. Its main theme is the triumph of light over darkness. The celebration traditionally includes fireworks. In Canada, people often light candles in their homes, while in India, they light small clay lamps filled with oil; illumination is believed to ward off evil and attract happiness and good fortune. Believers also display colourful geometric rangoli patterns to decorate entrances. Families and friends also share sweets and gifts with one another and with those in need.