Who’s ready to celebrate? Diwali coins, fireworks mark this year’s festivities

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(Photos: Royal Canadian Mint; CNW Group/Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce)

BY KELLY ROCHE

A pair of coins saluting this year’s Diwali celebration have been released for the first time by the Royal Canadian Mint.
The one ounce pure gold coins are designed by artist Sarindar Dhaliwal, combining maple leaves with Hindu symbols.
The price tag? Just under $2,700.
The five-day observance is celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and many others around the world in which gifts of silver or gold are given and Indian sweets are exchanged.
New clothing is worn to usher in the new year.
The auspicious day falls on Nov. 11, which is Remembrance Day.
Two more coins are also available from a major Canadian bank.
CIBC is “proud to celebrate alongside the more than one million Canadians of South Asian heritage and mark the Festival of Lights with our special commemorative coins,” managing director and head Vineet Malhotra said in a statement.
The unique coins weigh one ounce and are made of fine gold or pure silver. The coins depict the goddess Lakshmi, signifying good fortune, wealth, prosperity and god Ganesh, the remover of obstacles. A sacred Om symbol is on the obverse side.
They can be purchased online and at select branches in the Greater Toronto Area and Vancouver and ordered at any Canadian branch for pickup.
Celebrations in Mississauga are sure to be noticed by neighbours on Wednesday.
City council recently passed an exception to the by-law, allowing fireworks to be set off for Diwali and Chinese New Year (February 8, 2016) for a period of one year, starting November 1.
Mississauga East-Cooksville MPP Dipika Damerla made the request to council, stating Hindus and Sikhs make up more than 10 per cent of the city’s diverse population.

A few reminders:
• fireworks cannot be set off on a public street or roadway
• fireworks can only be set off in a park if a permit is obtained from the fire chief
• fireworks should only be purchased from a licensed retailer permitted to sell fireworks to the general public within the City of Mississauga as per by-law 1-06 and by-law 340-01.

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