New Delhi: Marking the beginning of Diwali, Delhiites Wednesday celebrated Dhanteras with great gusto shopping for metals like gold and silver.
Most of the markets in the city were choked with enthusiastic buyers purchasing various items. It is believed that buying new metal on Dhanteras brings good luck.
Lalita Suri, a homemaker who shopped for gold ornaments for her daughter, said: "My daughter is getting married in April next year and I wanted to start the ornament shopping on Dhanteras since it is an auspicious occasion."
However, not everyone buys precious metals on the day.
"The price of gold is very high and I don`t want to buy ornaments just for the sake of it. Yet, to celebrate the occasion, I bought a few utensils. One of my friends just bought a spoon because she didn`t need anything," said Kaveri Sharma, another homemaker.
There are various legends behind the celebration of Dhanteras. According to one, the son of King Hima was doomed to die on the fourth day of his marriage by snake bite. When his wife came to know of the prediction, she didn`t let him sleep on the fourth day of their marriage and heaped all her ornaments and gold coins in front of the door and sang songs.
When Lord Yama, the god of death, reached their doorstep in the form of a serpent, he was so blinded by the dazzle of the ornaments that he couldn`t get past the door. He sat on the heap of the ornaments and stayed there all night listening to the songs. In the morning, he quietly went away.
Diwali, the festival of lights, will be celebrated Nov 5.