City breaks world record with 300,000 oil lamps for Diwali

Travel
(CNN) — The northern Indian city of Ayodhya reportedly broke a Guinness World Record by lighting more than 300,000 clay oil lamps on the eve of the Hindu festival Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights.
Participants light earthen oil lamps on the banks of the Sarayu river in an attempt to enter the Guinness World Records for the largest display of oil lamps on the eve of Diwali

Participants light earthen oil lamps on the banks of the Sarayu river in an attempt to enter the Guinness World Records for the largest display of oil lamps on the eve of Diwali

PAWAN KUMAR/REUTERS

The lamps were lit simultaneously for five minutes on the banks of the Sarayu River, which runs through the holy city of Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh, beating a 2016 record in a neighboring state, according to a regional government statement.

Indian people light earthen lamps on the banks of the River Sarayu on the eve of "Diwali" festival during a "Deepotsav" event organised by the Uttar Pradesh government in Ayodhya on November 6, 2018

Indian people light earthen lamps on the banks of the River Sarayu on the eve of “Diwali” festival during a “Deepotsav” event organised by the Uttar Pradesh government in Ayodhya on November 6, 2018

SANJAY KANOJIA/AFP/Getty Images

The event was attended by South Korean first lady Kim Jung-sook, who is on a four-day visit to India, and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.

The East Asian country has a historical connection to the city due to a Korean legend which tells how a princess from Ayodhya traveled to Korea and married Korean King Suro in 48 CE, the statement said.

Participants light earthen oil lamps on the banks of the Sarayu river in an attempt to enter the Guinness World Records for the largest display of oil lamps on the eve of Diwali

Participants light earthen oil lamps on the banks of the Sarayu river in an attempt to enter the Guinness World Records for the largest display of oil lamps on the eve of Diwali

PAWAN KUMAR/REUTERS

An official adjudicator of the Guinness World Records announced on Tuesday night that the record had been created, Indian broadcaster NDTV reports.

“A total of 301,152 diyas [clay oil lamps] were lit up simultaneously for five minutes, which is a new record,” Guinness Book of Record’s Rishi Nath said, according to NDTV.

The northern city of Ayodhya held celebrations on the eve of Diwali

The northern city of Ayodhya held celebrations on the eve of Diwali

SANJAY KANOJIA/AFP/Getty Images

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath attended the event that featured cultural performances from Laotian, Russian, Indian and Trinidadian artists.

Hindus — the majority in India — traditionally believe that Ayodhya is the birthplace of Lord Rama, one of that faith’s most revered deities. Ayodhya is one of the Hindus’ seven sacred cities.

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