Hindus around the world are celebrating Diwali, the festival of lights. Also known as Deepavali and Tihar, Diwali is one of Hinduism's most important festivals, marking the homecoming of the god Lord Ram after vanquishing the demon king Ravana. The festival symbolises taking people from darkness to light in the victory of good over evil.

Hindus believe that on this auspicious day, Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, enters their homes and brings good luck and prosperity. Traditionally, lamps are lit in every nook and corner of the house. Devotees decorate their houses with flowers and decorative lights, and wear new clothes. Later in the evening, many cities are wreathed in smoke as millions of fireworks are lit. However, the sale of fireworks has been banned in New Delhi, in a move to curb air pollution.

IBTimes UK wishes its Hindu readers a happy Diwali and presents photos of colourful celebrations in India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, South Africa and the UK.