By: Melvin Samuel
King Charles, in a goodwill gesture, offered UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak Diwali sweets as he performed his duty as head of state and formally appointed the new Conservative leader, the event which also coincided with the occasion of the most celebrated five-day “Festival of Lights” celebrated this week by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains, marking the triumph of good over evil.
The two met in the palace’s lavish 1844 Room, and on a table was a selection of sweets that are eaten to celebrate Diwali, wrote The Royal Family Channel on its Twitter account.
The room is a new setting for the monarch’s meetings with the Prime Minister.
After Sunak rose to power, the event prompted a sense of pride among Indians. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi also offered him “special” Diwali wishes as the “living bridge” of UK Indians.
Sunak, whose parents came to the UK from East Africa in the 1960s, is of Indian descent. His father was a local doctor while his mother ran a pharmacy in southern England, something Sunak says gave him his desire to serve the public.
He will also be the first Hindu to become British prime minister, securing the position on Diwali, the festival of lights that marks one of the most important days of the Hindu calendar. Sunak himself made history in 2020 when he lit Diwali candles outside 11 Downing Street, the official residence of the UK chancellor.