Shri Sita Ram Foundation Hosts 12th International Diwali and Dussehra Festival

By Kapil Sharma

Last year’s parade with Shri Arun Verma, CG Aseem Mahajan, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Fort Bend County Judge KP George.

HOUSTON: The Shri Sita Ram Foundation, USA is delighted to invite the Houston community to join in the celebration of the 12th International Diwali-Dussehra Festival. This vibrant event promises to be a day filled with cultural entertainment, delectable food, dance performances, and spectacular fireworks.    

Event Details:   

Date: Saturday, November 4, 2023   

Time: 2:00 PM – 9:00 PM    

Location: Fort Bend Epicenter, Rosenberg, Texas    

 Diwali, known as the “Festival of Lights,” is one of the most significant cultural festivals in India, symbolizing the triumph of light over darkness and knowledge over ignorance. It is celebrated not only by Hindus but also by Sikhs, Jains, and Buddhists, or more than a billion people worldwide.   

Traditional festivities include fairs, food preparations, prayers, and the exchange of gifts. The night is illuminated with fireworks, and homes are adorned with lamps and rangolis — traditional decorations drawn on the floor — to welcome wealth and prosperity.   

The parade of international flags was enthusiastically received by the house-full audience.

“Diwali is more than just a festival,” said Dr. Arun Varma, the founder of the Shri Sita Ram Foundation. “It’s an embodiment of the age-old Indian saying, “Vasudhava Kutumbakam,” which means ‘the world is one family.’ It reminds us that we are all connected, that every person on this planet is our brother or sister. With that spirit, we invite one and all to join us and celebrate our shared humanity, irrespective of backgrounds or beliefs.” 

 Highlights of the 12th International Diwali-Dussehra Festival 2023:   

The festival kicks off with a grand parade featuring over 40 floats representing various cultural and social organizations with dance and music. A standout in this procession is a remarkable replica model of the new Shri Ram Temple in Ayodhya, which will open in January.   

Families attending the festival can look forward to a day filled with child-friendly entertainment. From pony rides, clowns, free face painting, moonwalks, balloons, and magic shows to engaging puppet performances, there’s something for every young heart. A competitive kids’ Broadway show will also showcase the talents of youth, including singing, dancing, musical performances, and skits.   

 Local business booths will offer a diverse range of products including handicrafts, art, and delectable traditional Indian cuisine.   

 Attendees can immerse themselves in cultural traditions through an exhibition of paintings of Ram, a major Hindu deity and a traditional Ram Leela play and the Maha Aarti, the prayers to Lord Ram.   

 As the sun sets, the evening will come alive with a mesmerizing laser show, setting the stage for the symbolic Ravan effigy burning — symbolizing the victory of Lord Rama over the demon king Ravan — and the breathtaking fireworks display.   

 Enthusiasts of traditional Indian dance can join the “Garba around the fountain”, a popular Indian group dance accompanied by traditional music and mesmerizing color changing lights.    

This year, the festival is honored to welcome distinguished guests, including the Consul General of India and HH Chinna Jeeyar Swami ji. The Shri Sita Ram Foundation invites the community to come together and celebrate this diverse cultural extravaganza.   

  About Shri Sita Ram Foundation:   

Founded in 2012, the Shri Sita Ram Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to advancing the cultural and social aspects of the Indian community in the United States.   

 The Shri Sita Ram Foundation has been organizing the International Diwali-Dussehra Festivals for 12 years, and this event has become one of the most popular Diwali celebrations in the United States, attracting 10,000 attendees last year. Distinguished guests, including Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Texas Governor Greg Abbott have graced the festival in the past.    

 In addition, the foundation provides philanthropic support to several other charities, and provides scholarships to underprivileged students and assists disadvantaged persons in the community.   

 For more information, visit our website at and connect with us on Facebook and Twitter @ShriSitaRam.