Assistant Minister for Multicultural Affairs, Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells today acknowledged the nation’s Hindu communities for their rich contribution to our cultural diversity. Senator Fierravanti-Wells attended the Deepavali Festival at Parramatta Park on behalf of the Prime Minister, the Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP. Deepavali is one of the most important Indian festivals, celebrating peace, harmony and the simple things in life. “Also known as the “festival of lights”, Deepavali or Diwali transcends religious differences to unite everyone in celebration, bringing together not only those of Indian ancestry and followers of the Hindu, Sikh or Jain faiths, but all Australians,” the Senator said. Over 10,000 visitors enjoyed a day of food, dance, music, rides, fireworks and entertainment at Parramatta Park. The Senator acknowledged the important role the nation’s Hindu community continues to play in Australia’s social, cultural and economic fabric. “On behalf of the Prime Minister and the Australian Government, I offer our warmest wishes for this year’s Deepavali celebrations.” “During Deepavali, we remember that cultural expression is an important element in our society. For many, it provides meaning, purpose and inspiration to their daily lives. It enriches and enlivens our society, giving a greater texture and depth to the backdrop of modern life.” There are more than 275,000 Hindus in Australia, according to the 2011 Census. About half of all Hindus here were born in India. Deepavali celebrations are taking place in communities across the country in November.