Credit: Indian Heritage Centre
Credit: Indian Heritage Centre
Credit: Indian Heritage Centre

Why is Deepavali Celebrated?

Deepavali Celebrations 2021 - Indian Heritage Centre

Two digital storytelling performances featuring stories behind why Deepavali is celebrated.

Date: 1 Oct – 14 Nov 2021
Location: Online

For Indian Heritage Centre / National Heritage Board

Experience two stories behind why Deepavali is celebrated with master storyteller Kamini Ramachandran. Enjoy an abridged retelling of the familiar tale from the great epic, The Ramayana, and discover a lesser known myth behind the festival of lights.   

The Ramayana


Master storyteller Kamini Ramachandran retells the origin story of Deepavali that most are familiar with. Relating to The Ramayana, the timeless tale of love, adventure, and friendship tracks Rama’s return to the palace of Ayodhya. Here, people of the kingdom light oil lamps, illuminating a brightly lit path at night, guiding Rama home.

Originally presented as 'Ramayana Retold’ for Indian Heritage Centre as part of Culture Fest 2020 Digital Edition.

Narakasura & Krishna


Another Deepavali story stems from the myth of Narakasura and Krishna. Narakasura was born from the divine union between Vishnu (in the form of Varaaha the boar) and Bhoomi Devi (Mother Earth). He was gifted a tusk that made him invincible, and he soon forgot that it was to be used for good deeds and to help others. 

In this version, he battles Krishna’s wife Satyabhama and Krishna himself, and only realises his folly – that he had not honoured the tusk’s true intentions – in his final minutes. Narakasura then asks the divine couple for one wish – that his death be remembered with colours and lights. As he breathed his last, night turned to day. With his death, Krishna and his wife emerge victorious, bringing light and coming out from the darkness wrought by Narakasura. 

The video is filmed with thanks to: Cosmic Ultima Pictures, S S Vikneshwaran Subramaniam, Manju Balakrishnan, Kavitha Rajoo and team.