Antananarivo [Madagascar], October 9 (ANI): The Indian community in Madagascar is celebrating the nine-day festival of Navratri with traditional Garba, Dandiya and Gujarati music in the capital Antananarivo and other cities like Mahajunga, Tomasina, Antsiranana across the country.
Madagascar has a strong Indian diaspora with a population of 17,500, mostly from the state of Gujarat in India. The vibrant community has been engaged in trade and commerce in the island country.
The Indian diaspora recently took part in the Navaratri celebration that commenced on Thursday and performed Dandiya and Garba in the African country.
The devotees dressed in colourful traditional 'chaniya cholis' and 'sarees' were seen doing Garba on folk tunes as an offering to Goddess Durga. The traditional Garba dance is performed generally during the evenings of the nine-day-long festival, which finally culminates into Dussehra.
Also known as Sharadiya Navratri, the occasion is believed to mark Goddess Durga's victory over demon Mahishasura, signifying the victory of good over evil.
Earlier this year in March, Madagascar Prime Minister Christian Ntsay had inaugurated a special exhibition on the Indian diaspora in the country at the Indian Embassy here to mark the Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsava.
The exhibition is being taken to different parts across Madagascar to increase awareness about Indian culture.
A grand Hindu temple is also under construction in Antananarivo, which is likely to open by the end of this year or early next year.
A permanent memorial for the Indian community in Madagascar is also being built and is expected to be completed by next year. (ANI)