For the first time, New Zealand Post is commemorating the Indian festival of lights with a set of vibrant stamps that illustrates the story of Diwali.
Four stamps, each representing an integral element of the festival can now be pre-ordered for October 7 from the NZ Post Collectables website.
The Shubh Diwali stamps reflect the four prominent elements of Diwali celebrations – the diyas, the rangoli, the fireworks and the family gatherings.
These stamps can be bought individually, as stamp sheets, barcode blocks, logo blocks and value blocks.
The miniature sheet features a vibrant illustration of the goddess Lakshmi. The sheet showcases rangoli and diyas that welcome the Goddess of wealth into homes, bringing with her good fortune and prosperity. These can be pre-ordered as special collectables.
Over the years, the Diwali celebration in New Zealand has gained great momentum and extended well beyond the Indian community. The launch of these commemorative stamps demonstrates this impact of the Indian culture on the wider New Zealand society.
NZ Post Stamps and Collectables Programme and Content Manager Lynette Townsend said the release of the Diwali stamps (on 7 October) acknowledges the importance of the Hindu festival here in New Zealand.
“Diwali is increasingly being celebrated throughout Aotearoa and has become a well-known and much-loved event that many of us participate in, alongside Hindu New Zealanders,” she said.
“We also want the NZ Post Collectable stamp programme to be reflective of New Zealand’s diverse communities.”
Townsend said her team worked collaboratively with Manisha Morar and the New Zealand Indian Central Association, in creating the stamps.
“It was important we accurately and appropriately represented Diwali and the ways in which it is celebrated here.”
This will be the second time a stamp is launched in celebration of Indian culture.
In 2018, a postage stamp on Mahatma Gandhi was launched at the Auckland Diwali Festival by Mayor Phil Goff and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
At the launch, Mayor Goff had acknowledged the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and said, “It’s my great pleasure to use this occasion to ask the Indian High Commissioner and the Hon Consul of India to come forward so that we can launch for the first time in New Zealand history a postage stamp of Mahatma Gandhi.”
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