Indian-Americans have one more reason to party this Diwali: The United States Postal Service has finally given Diwali its stamp of approval. After campaigning for more than a decade, USPS finally released a Diwali Forever stamp on Oct. 5 to commemorate India’s biggest festival, which will happen on Oct. 29 and 30 this year.
A Forever stamp is a non-denominational First Class postage stamp created by USPS in 2007, and Diwali was the only major religious holiday not commemorated in a stamp — until now. In the stamp, a beautifully lit diya (an earthen oil lamp) nestled among rose petals, will exist alongside Charlie Brown Christmas stamps, menorahs, and Eid Mubarak stamps. How awesome is that?
You may have heard about this festival, celebrated by millions of people, if you’ve watched the Diwali episode of The Office. Or maybe you’ve heard about it because the festival includes some pretty amazing dancing, delicious Indian food, stunning outfits, and fireworks. Well, we can add a pretty awesome stamp to that list now, too.
Indian-Americans are pretty pumped about it. “For 1.3 billion Indians in India, for about four million Indian-Americans, and for many more around the world, the festival of light is here,” said Ranju Batra, chair of the Diwali Stamp Project, at a ceremony at the Consulate General of India in New York, celebrating the stamp’s unveiling, according to Linn’s Stamp News.
“Now that the Diwali stamp is reality, what better gift to choose for your family and friends, than one that is reflective of your heritage, speaks of your pride in your roots, and also honors the Stars and Stripes!” wrote community activist Meera Prahlad posted on the Indiaspora blog, a website that connects members of the Indian diaspora living in the United States.