Taiwan celebrates Lantern Festival

Yunlin (Taiwan) Feb 12: Millions of lanterns in the shape of Christian churches, Buddhist temples, and Hindu temples with Brahma, Krish, Lakshmi and Durga lit up the night sky of Taiwan to celebrate the Lantern Festival, marking the 15th day of the first month of the Chinese lur calendar. The Lantern Festival was iugurated on Saturday in Yunlin county in the southwestern part of the island country and will go on till February 19. Thousands of people coming from all over the country as well as tourists participated in the iuguration. The Taiwan Lantern Festival is a Buddhist tradition coming from mainland Chi and is celebrated as part of the Chinese New Year. “It is a popular festival highlighting our friendly approach and love for the people,” said Eric Lin, Director of Intertiol Affairs Division at Taiwan Tourism. Hosting the festival iuguration for the first time, the Yunlin displayed 3,000 lanterns on a plot of land spread over more than 50 hectares. “It is the biggest Lantern Festival ever in the history of Taiwan. This year, the theme celebrates the diverse cultures and beliefs of the island,” said Jin, one of the organisers of the festival, working for the Taiwan Ministry of Communication.  (ians)