Spirit of Deep­avali

> Lo­cal celebri­ties share their fes­tive plans and shed a light on what the oc­ca­sion means to them

The Sun (Malaysia) - - LIFESTYLE - BY BISSME S.

ON SATUR­DAY, Malaysians will be cel­e­brat­ing Deep­avali, one of Hin­duism’s main fes­ti­vals. Spir­i­tu­ally, Deep­avali sig­ni­fies the vic­tory of light over dark­ness, and of good over evil. We asked a few Malaysian celebri­ties and en­ter­tain­ers about their Deep­avali plans.

Hardee Bee, beat­boxer and em­cee “Deep­avali is a time for bond­ing with your fam­ily and friends.

“Deep­avali is also a time to be grate­ful. I have a lot to be grate­ful for this year.

“I [opened] for Anirudh Ravichan­der (a well-known film com­poser and singer in In­dia), when he held a con­cert in Kuala Lumpur early this year.

“Anirudh also asked me to pro­vide some beat­box rhythms for the song Nee Kad­ha­lan, for the Tamil movie Remo (star­ring fa­mous Madras movie star Si­vakarthikeyan). I man­aged to show­case my tal­ent out­side Malaysia.”

Re­vathy Mari­ap­pan, TV host “Deep­avali is about fam­ily, friends and food. Deep­avali gives you the op­por­tu­nity to catch up with your [loved ones] while [eat­ing ev­ery­thing from] tho­sai to mut­ton curry.

“Usu­ally, my Deep­avali morn­ing starts with a visit to the tem­ple with my hus­band. Then, we will have break­fast with my par­ents, fol­lowed by lunch with my in-laws.

“When I was a kid, I thought Deep­avali was about play­ing with fire­crack­ers, get­ting new clothes and money pack­ets. Now as an adult, I un­der­stand the real mean­ing of Deep­avali. It is about bring­ing smiles to oth­ers.”

M. Subash Man­nan, film di­rec­tor and ac­tor “Be­sides act­ing and di­rect­ing, I also run tu­ition classes in Bant­ing and Cheras. My stu­dents and I are plan­ning to visit an or­phan­age on the first day of Deep­avali.

“On the sec­ond day of Deep­avali, we will be vis­it­ing an old folks’ home. We will be bring­ing them food and also en­ter­tain­ing them.

“We want to bring cheer and bright­ness to [peo­ple]. Deep­avali is about the glow of love and we should be spread­ing [it] all over the place.”

Alinda A. Alphonse, singer-ac­tress “My aunt passed away early this year so our cel­e­bra­tion will be a low-key af­fair. We might take a trip to the sea.

“When you are a child, Deep­avali is all about re­ceiv­ing – from the food, to ‘ang pows’. When you be­come an adult, your role changes. On Deep­avali, you are the one giv­ing to [the young ones].

“I don’t go over­board with buy­ing Deep­avali out­fits. I just make sure that I wear [at least one new piece of at­tire] in the morn­ing. It could be some­thing as sim­ple as just get­ting a new pair of shoes.

“I never for­get to take the oil bath and go the tem­ple on Deep­avali morn­ing.

“I would like to ad­vise my fans to drive care­fully on the road and not to play with fire­works. The last thing you want is an ac­ci­dent.” Aanan­tha, TV host, ra­dio dee­jay and ac­tor “I have been tak­ing up yoga and med­i­ta­tion for some time, and last year, I be­came a veg­e­tar­ian. “So when I vis­ited peo­ple last Deep­avali, they were sur­prised when I did not eat their spicy prawns and their juicy mut­ton. Some of them teased me for miss­ing out on the de­li­cious food. “But I have [en­joyed] be­ing a veg­e­tar­ian. My stom­ach [aches less]. “Deep­avali is about for­get­ting the an­i­mos­ity you have with oth­ers, and build­ing a bet­ter re­la­tion­ship with ev­ery­one around you.”

Shan­jey Ku­mar Peru­mal, film di­rec­tor “I got mar­ried re­cently. I will soon be­come a fa­ther. Ac­cord­ing to In­dian cus­tom, in the first year of mar­riage, I should be cel­e­brat­ing Deep­avali with my wife’s fam­ily in Rawang. “On the sec­ond day of Deep­avali, I will be go­ing back to Parit Bun­tar, Perak, to visit my par­ents. “I must also count my bless­ings that my film Ja­gat won the awards for for best di­rec­tor and best film at the re­cent Malaysian Film Fes­ti­val. “I have been work­ing hard to make this film a re­al­ity for the last 10 years. My at­tempts have been fruit­ful.”

Ajith Bhaskar Dass, In­dian clas­si­cal dancer “I have two dance shows com­ing up. I will be busy re­hears­ing, but I only take one day off on Deep­avali day. My sib­lings from Kuala Lumpur and Pe­nang will be com­ing down to Jo­hor Baru to spend the fes­ti­val with me and my mum. “Dur­ing my child­hood days, my Chi­nese and Malay friends would visit me. There was a lot of ap­pre­ci­a­tion for each other’s cul­ture then. “These days I do not see this hap­pen­ing and that is not healthy for the com­mu­nity and the coun­try.”

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