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No one does Diwali melas like Delhi, and here’s our comprehensive cut-n-keep guide to the most sought-after festive fairs in town

lifestyle Updated: Oct 19, 2013 19:13 IST

With two weeks to go for the grand Festival of Lights, the mood for the fete has truly begun. With the Capital usually being the heartbeat of the big Diwali festival, how can this year be any different! Organisers around Delhi are in the thick of things, trying to outdo each other. From the products to the activities to the programmes, one fair’s better than the other — and here’s our pick of the most colourful ones to choose from.

Jamia Bazaar
With an aim to bring together women collectives and other small non-profit organisations working in the Jamia area, this two-day bazaar will host around 40 stalls. In its third edition, the bazaar is being organised by The Centre for Equity and Inclusion. Products including handmade diyas and candles, decorative pieces, stoles, lamps and hand embroidered suits will be on display. The bazaar will be inaugurated by actor Gul Panag.
When: October 26-27
Where: India Islamic Cultural Centre,
Lodhi Road
Timings: 11am to 8pm

Blind School Mela
One of the most talked about and oldest fests in town, this mela will feature a range of products. Clothes, footwear, furnishings, handicrafts, gift items, you name it and you have it at this fair. You can also lend a helping hand to the Blind School by buying candles from this mela. A good amount of the sales proceedings at this fest goes towards charitable purposes.
When: October 26 – November 1
Where: Blind Relief Association, Lal Bahadur Shastri Marg
Timings: 10.30am to 8pm

Sunder Nagar Mela
This is one of the most complete affairs in town. Here, the food, shopping and various colourful activities will provide the visitors with all the facets of the festivities. If you happen to visit this fair, feast on a multi-cuisine menu that includes Indian, Italian, Chinese and Mexican. For all the shopaholics, there are various stalls of handicrafts, clothing and gift items to choose from. The amusement section is also a must visit.
When: October 26-27
Where: Sunder Nagar Grounds, Sunder Nagar
Timings: 4pm to 10.30pm

Deep Utsav at dilli haat
After hitting it off with people for many years, this mela is back with some new products and shows. From carpets and furnishings, to stoles and bags, shop for an all-new range of ethnic products for yourself and for your home. At this mela, there are also several cultural programmes including song and dance performances by various art groups from rural India.
When: October 20, and October 25 — November 2
Where: Delhi Haat, INA, Aurobindo Marg
Timings: 10.30am to 10pm

Dastkar Bazaar
Strong on traditional crafts, this festival would bring handmade products from across the country — that would depict the talent of the average Indian artisan. A variety of commodities would include papier-mache items, metal artworks, pottery, block-print linens, cane furniture, hammocks, miniature paintings and hand-painted fabrics. For the entire range of merchandise in the mela, Dastkar has tied up with as many as 350 groups of craftsmen.
On till: October 27
Where: Kisan Haat, Andheria Modh
Timings: 11am to 7pm

Crafts Bazaar
This particular mela is where the talent of the women artisans would come to the fore. Being organised by the All India Women’s Conference, this fest could prove to be a shopping feast for all the ladies. From purses and jootis to lamps and carpets, there is a wide range of items to shop for at this fair. In addition to this, demonstrations by artisans, folk performances and mehndi-churi will be there as well.
When: October 21-23
Where: Aga Khan Hall, Bhagwandas Road
Timings: 10.30am to 8pm

Maidens Diwali
This fest is for all those with high-end taste and deep pockets. It would basically be an exhibition of all things smart, stylish and designer. From chic cutlery, tissue boxes, candle holders, vases, fragrances, hand-painted mirrors, serving trays, baskets, boxes and gifts, you can purchase all things luxurious here. So if it’s not grassroot ethnic that you’re looking for, here’s a good glamorous spread!
When: October 25
Where: Hotel Oberoi Maidens, Civil Lines
Timings: 10am to 8pm

WCE @ Diwali
In what is probably a one-of-a-kind initiative for kids, Creative Children Media is organising its Diwali fest targeting all the young ones. From getting to meet different cartoon characters like Doraemon and Chhota Bheem, to various interactive and educative games, this fair aims to give kids a glimpse into the wonderland all over again. The mela will also include a storytelling session by the Julia Gabriel Centre for Learning.
When: October 20
Where: The Island, Ambience Mall, Gurgaon
Timings: 10.30am to 8.30pm

Epicentre’s Diwali Mela
‘Shop your heart out’ can aptly be the unofficial slogan of this fair. From the regular diyas and candles, to saris, festive wear, jewellery, accessories, home furnishings, home artifacts and silverware, you can get all this here. In what would be exclusive to this fair, the Charkula Arts Academy from Mathura will perform the Ramlila. Also, there will be a Bollywood Night at the finale of the three-day event.
When: October 20
Where: Epicentre, Apparel House, Gurgaon
Timings: 11am to 8pm

Zorba’s Tvisha
This mela would be packed with several activities. From music and dance performances by Madhusudan, Man Goes Human, Pragnya Wakhlu, Ravi and troupe, to a flash mob, puppet shows and a flying lanterns performance, there is much to look forward to at this programme. Also available at this fair will be a healing and spiritual lounge, and special events for children and shopaholics.
When: November 1
Where: Zorba Entertainment,
MG Road, Gurgaon
Timings: 10.30am to 9pm